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Should we respond to the letter or wait it out?

  • Respond

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Wait

    Votes: 1 100.0%

  • Total voters
    1
#1
What is the name of your state? Iowa

My daughter and her “friend” lived in a trailer (shared lease) from March-August. Water and energy were in the roommates name and the cable bill was in my daughters name. The mother of the roommate sent a letter to my daughter stating that she paid the utility bill, which was in the roommates name, and that my daughter had two weeks to pay her or she would take her to court. My daughter is a authorized user on the energy account and was able to verify that as of 6 days after the letter was post marked the bill has in fact not been paid.

I am trying to determine how best to handle this. Even if the two roommates had a 50/50 agreement then my daughter would have recourse to counter sue for half the cable bill, half of the last’s months rent which only my daughter paid as well as cost of a cellphone and bill my daughter had gotten for the roommate.

Do we wait out their bluff and see if they sue? Should my daughter pay the 50% directly to the energy and water company and then when sued show proof it’s paid? Or do we beat them to the punch and sue?

Personally I feel we should go separate ways and each pay their own.

I also don’t think the mother has any recourse to collect money from my daughter on a bill she paid that was in her daughters name sine my daughter and that mother had no agreement. Correct? Only the daughter would have leg to stand on if she claims there were a verbal agreement.
 


quincy

Senior Member
#2
How were the bills typically paid?

The roommates no longer live together (their lease has ended), correct?

They both will be getting final bills that they need to take care of. Your daughter can ask her former roommate for copies of the final bills she receives and your daughter should send her roommate the final bills she receives. They can split the costs 50/50.

It doesn't matter if the mom pays the bill for her daughter. Your daughter still owes her half.

I think this should be able to be managed without any lawsuit.
 
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#3
At the Beginning of August they received notice that their rent (838 split 50/50) was late and they must pay within 5 days or eviction process would begin. My daughter had her share but the roommate did not. They discussed they couldn't afford to live there and made arrangements w landlord if half of Aug rent were paid they could stay until the 14th. They chose to do this and so my daughter paid the money she had saved for aug rent. Personally I believe the roommate should owe half of that. They were in the trailer from mid march until 8/14. There were only two months of payments made to energy co leaving 438 owed. I am not sure how those two payments were made. I'd imagine they both paid towards it.

The water bill is quarterly and that was not paid while they resided there.
 

LdiJ

Senior Member
#4
At the Beginning of August they received notice that their rent (838 split 50/50) was late and they must pay within 5 days or eviction process would begin. My daughter had her share but the roommate did not. They discussed they couldn't afford to live there and made arrangements w landlord if half of Aug rent were paid they could stay until the 14th. They chose to do this and so my daughter paid the money she had saved for aug rent. Personally I believe the roommate should owe half of that. They were in the trailer from mid march until 8/14. There were only two months of payments made to energy co leaving 438 owed. I am not sure how those two payments were made. I'd imagine they both paid towards it.

The water bill is quarterly and that was not paid while they resided there.
I think that you misunderstood the question as I believe it was asked. They lived there 4 1/2 months. The cable bill was in your daughter's name and the utility bill was in the other person's name. Did your daughter pay the cable bill and the other person pay the utility bill, or did they each give each other 1/2 of the cost of the bills each month? What was their habit for those first 4 months in paying the bills?
 
#5
it is y understanding that my daughter gave money towards the payment of the utility bill and vice a versa. Also for the energy bill my daughter used her debit to pay this, I'm not certain if the roommate gave her half or less of the payment.

Let's be clear I am not necessarily questioning whether my daughter is responsible for half the bill. More so I am questioning whether someone other than the roommate has any legal ground to collect from my daughter for the utility paid for the roommate? Also, they are making the claim they paid this debt but contacting the utility company there has been no record this has been paid.
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
#6
Is there a reason your adult-daughter can't handle this? Why do you ask "Do we wait out their bluff and see if they sue? Should my daughter pay the 50% directly to the energy and water company and then when sued show proof it’s paid? Or do we beat them to the punch and sue?" You are not a party to this. Perhaps it's time to cut the apron strings...
 
#7
Quincy I don't think i had seen your complete reply last night when I responded. Let me be clear I agree this could be managed wo a lawsuit. We have asked the roommate for copies of these bills they say my daughter owes on. Initially our request was ignored and after that letter was sent to my daughter I asked again and the roommate responded w 'my mom already paid'. I pointed out that I was aware she paid because of the letter she sent and that I still need copies. She never responded.

I feel these people are trying to just get money from my daughter without care for even paying this bill. We shouldn't have to pay an amount based on their word right? Shouldn't they provide a final bill to show the amount owed?
 
#8
Is there a reason your adult-daughter can't handle this? Why do you ask "Do we wait out their bluff and see if they sue? Should my daughter pay the 50% directly to the energy and water company and then when sued show proof it’s paid? Or do we beat them to the punch and sue?" You are not a party to this. Perhaps it's time to cut the apron strings...
Lol believe me I have the same thought process. My daughter is 22 and this roommate is 30. The roommate mother brought me into this nonsense so I am invested to ensure they aren't trying to screw my daughter. So really it's time for that other party to cut the apron strings. Thank you for your non helpful advice
 

HRZ

Senior Member
#10
Suggestion from a LL...this is your daughters quest ! Two sets of strings need to be cut.

There is no privity of contract you to other mom or other tenant . ( Other mom is full of hot air )

There is a good equitable point that each tenant owes 1/2 of the partial aug rent but it's unclear what was agreed.

The person inamed on a service bill needs to get it paid...and sue other roommate as appropriate . Not smart to pay bills not in your name and expect an easy recovery from other RM.
 
#11
Suggestion from a LL...this is your daughters quest ! Two sets of strings need to be cut.

There is no privity of contract you to other mom or other tenant . ( Other mom is full of hot air )

There is a good equitable point that each tenant owes 1/2 of the partial aug rent but it's unclear what was agreed.

The person inamed on a service bill needs to get it paid...and sue other roommate as appropriate . Not smart to pay bills not in your name and expect an easy recovery from other RM.
Thank you. You answered my question. Believe me I really don't have that many strings attached to my daughter and I am simply inquirying for her.
 
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