Tucson, AZ asked in Landlord - Tenant for Arizona

Q: AZ LANDLORD TENANT LAW. can a landlord refuse to accept rent money by a 3rd party gov agency or non profit

If those agencies are willing to help prevent eviction

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1 Lawyer Answer

A: In many cases, a landlord has the discretion to accept or refuse payment from a third party. The specific rules can depend on the lease agreement and local and state laws, so it's essential to consult with a licensed attorney in your specific jurisdiction to understand the precise legal implications.

Generally, accepting rent from a third party does not automatically create a landlord-tenant relationship between that third party and the landlord. Still, there can be circumstances where a landlord might want to refuse such a payment.

For instance, in some cases, accepting regular payments from a third party could potentially lead to an implied landlord-tenant relationship. In other cases, accepting rent from a third party could inadvertently create a subletting situation, which might be prohibited under the lease agreement.

The Washington State Residential Landlord-Tenant Act does not explicitly address whether a landlord can refuse to accept rent by a third party agency. However, it does state that a landlord may not unreasonably withhold acceptance of a valid assignment or subletting proposed by the tenant (RCW 59.18.200(1)). The law does not define what constitutes 'unreasonable,' and it is subject to interpretation by the courts. If the third party agency is considered an 'assignee' or 'sublessee', then the landlord may not be able to unreasonably refuse to accept rent from them.

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