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A document forced by a landlord to bypass a lease legal?

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What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Saint Louis, Missouri

I have a client that living in an older apartment complex that he just brought to my attention they have some sort of document that bypasses his lease. I've never heard of anything like this and I was wondering if its legal and if there is anything he can do about it. I'm planning on scanning it. Anyway, anytime anyone in the complex has to pay the rent late. Say for example, the tenant tells the management company in advance they will be a day late or they swapped jobs and say the rent will be on a certain date. They will forceably demand the tenant sign this a custom made "promissary" note that basically says if they for whatever reason not make the payment on that date stated. The landlord can surpass the lease and immediately take possession of the apartment and everything inside.

No court, no eviction, and no other proceedings.

Apparently, they force people to sign it saying they have no choice. When he told me, I told him the only legal thing they can do is get mad and file for an eviction. Besides, the obvious of just not being late, things happen and this seems to stomp all over peoples rights. This really upset me as I thought about all the small families and single parents that might have feel victim to this trap and then sadly could not make the full or any of they payment on that date and did it at a later date. Then they legally lost anything.

Is this legal? Is there anything that can be done to stop them?

Gail in Georgia

Senior Member
If rent is late management can BEGIN the process of evicting a tenant (this is typically started with a "Pay or Quit" notice) but only the courts can actually evict a tenant.

Until the landlord/management has gone through this legal process, they cannot lock a tenant out, take over the apartment, take over their possessions, kick them out, etc. etc..



I don't think there is any legal way of bypassing the eviction process. If there were, everyone would be using it. It may just be an attempt to "scare" the unknowing tenant.

However, some landlords use a "promissory note" for delinquent rent when a tenant needs a little more time. A promissory note is proof in itself that the tenant owes money and therefore places the landlord in a much stronger position to collect monies owed. However, the note does not bypass or speed up the eviction process.

Who's Liable?

Senior Member
LL cannot force a tenant to relinquesh ANY rights afforded under the LL/T laws of their state. Doing so is a violation of state LL/T laws.
Ok this is the document, well the words. At the top it has his name, address, and the amount owed. at the bottom is the following statement followed by a place for him to sign.

RESIDENT understand and agrees that failure to pay the amounts due as stipulated herein will result in MANAGEMENT taking possession of the Premises occupied by the RESIDENT: that possession is granted by the RESIDENTS signature attached herto: that RESIDENT reaffirms and ackonowleges that they surrender management the Premisies upon RESIDENTS failure to pay the amounts due as stipulated herrein; that RESIDENT reaffirms and gives MANAGEMENT the right to take possession of the Premises; that possension may be taken without further notice by RESIDENT or any othe party or jursidiction, legal, or otherwise is required. etc..

Theres more but thats pretty much the main part of the concern.

Now don't get me wrong. I know hell stick to his agreed upon late period and pay when he stated. But isn't this illegal? Isn't this him giving up his rights on this lease? I know maybe I'm the one really upset about this letter now. Thinking about all the other people in that complex that might have been "got" or actually lost thier apartments agreeing to this. Am I overreacting?
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