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Sublettor took over my apartment

Posted by Chipmunk on July 19, 2000 at 15:02:55:

I've been in an apartment in Park Slope for 3yrs, 10 mos. I signed a lease when I got in the apartment Oct. '97. The lease expired a year later, and I was going month-to-month since Oct. '98. The landlord was fine with this, and came up twice in Jan. 99 & Jan 2000 and increased the rent $20 each time. The current rent is $840. I lived with the same roommate for the entire time. I'm an actor, and I work out of town a lot, and I've been subletting my half to a "friend" for my half of the rent. I've worked out-of-town consistently for the last 19 mos., so my sublettor has stayed the whole time, living on my furnishings. There are 3-4 units in the building, and I assume its rent controlled. Probably a 1900s building, I'm not sure. Anyway, my roommate is moving out July 23, and I'm still out-of-town, and my sublettor has signed a lease with the landlord without me knowing. As of July 1st he has claimed "sole legal" tenancy. I never received a 30 day notice, and the sublettor told the landlord he would "take care of the deposit" with my roommate and I (meaning we have to get it back from him). I called the landlord, and he confirmed the new lease and the exchange of the deposit to my sublettor. I'm in shock!! I'm still under contract in Out-of-State, and can't get back before July 24th. He's moved my possessions into storage, and will tell me where they are when he receives payment of charges for moving, storage, storage deposit, and God knows what else. My roommate was not informed that he's taken over the lease, even when he paid his rent for July. What can I do about this? I appreciate any help or advice. Thanks!!

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