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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My daughter shares a house with 2 other girls. I have signed

Customer Question

My daughter shares a house with 2 other girls. I have signed as guarantor for my daughter and the other parents have signed as guarantor for their respective children. One girl has left and the letting agent tells me i am liable for her rent if her father fails to pay it (I paid the original deposit for the let) The tenancy agreement says the following

'Where the party consists of more than one person the obligations apply to and are enforceable against them jointly and severally. Joint and several liability means that any one of the members of a party can be held responsible for the full obligations under the agreement if the other members do not fulfil their obligations.'

If this is the case why the guarantor form, does this override the tenancy? Presumably if i refuse to pay then the other parent is liable, or does the agent have to follow a legal process of chasing the other defaulting party first?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
HI.

Thank you for your question . My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

In order to give you an answer tailored to your circumstances, I will just need to ask you some preliminary questions so that I can consider your position from all angles.

Does the guarantee form specifically exclude liability for others than your daughter?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No it does not specifically exclude liability. It makes no mention of others only that i act as guarantor for my daughter. I can email a copy of the guarantor agreement if necessary

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
You can do that if you me to have sight of it but I can give you an answer anyway if you give me 10 mins to dictate it.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

FOR JOMO1972


 


This page won't let me reply with a copy pasted so your answer will have to do as it is. If i try to paste it i get access denied


 


Many thanks

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
I know this isn’t going to be the answer you want to hear, and it’s certainly not what I want to tell you. However, I wish to be completely honest with you, so I feel obligated to not give you false hope.

I am sorry but there isn’t much I can say that is positive here.

Unfortunately you are underpinning an AST. Un an AST any one signature to the contract is jointly and separately liable for the full amount. ‘Joint and separate’ liability in law means that any one person locked into the AST can be sued for the full amount including, of course, the young lady who placed you in this position.

I’m afraid that the guarantee documents are almost wholly unlikely to say anything contrary to that. Standards guarantors do not. You are guaranteeing the debt of your daughter and she is a jointly and separately liable party to the AST.

There are some things you can do about this. Of course, the landlord may choose to pursue the young lady who is responsible and her guarantor which brings an end to the subject.

One option is to pay off the sum and then recover by suing the departing tenant and her guarantor. You would succeed.

Another is to refuse to pay and invite them to sue and add all other signatures to the AST and their guarantors to the claim. Small claims court Judges, being what they are, might well make an order wholly against the tenant who caused this situation although there is no basis to do that in law.

I'm sorry this isn't the answer you wanted but it is the position that you face and I have a duty to inform you truthfully.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.

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