How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ash Your Own Question
Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
75100385
Type Your Property Law Question Here...
Ash is online now

My 27 yr old son moved into a shared flat in Clapham on 17/10

Customer Question

My 27 yr old son moved into a shared flat in Clapham on 17/10 2015. He then was asked to share with an old school friend, so decided to move out
, so there is only one person from the original agreement on 19/12/2015.
The landlord said that was OK if he found another tenant to replace him. My son has done his best to advertise for new tenants on gumtree etc with no luck .He thinks the flat is too expensive and he only took it because he was desperate.
When I looked at the AST he had signed, I see it was not for 6 months but for 3 years from 19/02/2015 when the original 3 tenants signed. In fact Barney signed a deed of assignment with another new tenant, so there is only one person from the original agreement.
I am worried that my son is liable to pay two sets of rent for another 2 years, if he can't find someone to take over. 6 months is one thing but 2 years is unreasonable.
Can I send you the documents ?
I see that on the deed of assignment the signatures were witnessed by my son's boss when they were not present and the 3 new signatures were witnessed by a colleague of my son's when only my son was present. Also this document was not dated. I don't believe this can be legally binding.
Can you help ?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you
You can attach the files here.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Many thanks
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Why did he sign it for 3 years if he didn't want that?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I think he presumed it was the usual 6 month AST like ones he had signed in the past at other flats he had rented.. He was about to be homeless and was desperate.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
It's bad news I am afraid - if he signed the agreement and he didn't read it was three years that is his own fault. He signed for three years and was bound by that. If he is saying he was told it was six month and it was three years that may be a different matter, then it's a lie because it's fraud.
Your son is liable to pay rent with the other tenants during the three year term. They are joint and severally liable.
I am sorry if this is not the answer you after and certainly not the one I want to give you, but I have a duty to be honest.
Can I clairfy anything else for you?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
How can the deed of assignment be legal if it has not been dated and the signatures not witnessed properly ?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
The main tenancy is fine, so legally binding.
But because a contract is not dated does not mean it is not legal. There is no legal requirement for a witness to sign it. It's only when there is a dispute does it become an issue.
Does that clairfy?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.
This may be a very expensive lesson for my son. Don't sign anything legally binding without taking advice.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Indeed. I am sorry it's not better news.
Alex
If this answers your question could I invite you rate my answer before you leave today.
If you don't rate then the site does not pay me for the time I have spent answering your question.
Please bookmark my profile if you wish for future help: http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-alexwatts/