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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
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I have just signed as a guarantor on my ex son-in-law's flat

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Hi
I have just signed as a guarantor on my ex son-in-law's flat - he has been struggling to find a permanent home since splitting from my daughter and, as they have four young children, I felt that I should offer some initial financial support and act as guarantor for him.
However, I am nearly 67 and semi-retired, and I am concerned that I have made an open-ended commitment - I would accept that, I the event of his defaulting on the rent, I would pay the rent for say 3-12 months. But I would have expected that the landlord, rather than just be content to take my money would have some responsibility to evict the tenant. Would this be the case?
What I have signed up to seems to be to, in the event of default, pay the rent for as long as the tenant occupies the property. A responsibility that even seems to extend beyond my death!
So, in short, I am trying to see what the maximum liability I face.
Yours
Ernest
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 months ago.

Is this an AST?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Not sure what an AST is - The initial tenancy is for 12 months with a review (either side) at 6 months.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 months ago.

But you have only signed the initial tenancy rather than a renewal?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Jus the initial tenancy agreement
Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 months ago.

In that case you are only liable for that tenancy agreement.

Whatever the AST purports to do, the law will only render you liable for the period of the AST that you signed unless you sign a renewal.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 months ago.

That said, of course some tenants can do a lot of damage in quite a short space of time so you do need to be careful about the guarantees that you sign.

However, it is not an open ended arrangement and you can always sue the tenant if you have to pay under a guarantee.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
That's somewhat reassuring, but bear in mind, as I noted I my initial message, the agreement states that I am liable 'for as long as the tent occupies the property - not just the length of the tenancy agreement. If this does mean that I am liable beyond the initial tenancy length (say the tenant refuses to move on) does the landlord have a responsibility to evict the tenant or can the landlord just sit back and accept that I will pay the rent in perpetuity?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 5 months ago.

Whatever the AST purports to do, the law will only render you liable for the period of the AST that you signed unless you sign a renewal.

Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69516
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
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Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thanks very much for this advice - it's reassuring.
Regards
Ernest

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