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FAQ: My landlord says I failed to pay rent due months ago. What do I do?

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FAQ: My landlord says I failed to pay rent due months ago. What do I do?

My landlord gave me notice that his records show that I did not pay rent for July. It is now October. I paid rent for August, September and October and my landlord never mentioned that I owed him the July rent. Can my landlord evict me now because he claims I didn't pay July rent?

If you can find proof that you paid July's rent (cancelled check or money order receipt), you should provide copies to your landlord, along with a letter explaining your position. If your landlord remains convinced that you did not pay July's rent, he may be able to sue you to collect the money but cannot seek to evict you because of nonpayment. Your landlord's acceptance of rent in August, September and October prevents him from seeking to evict you for failing to pay July rent. Your landlord can sue you to recover the rent you owe him for the month of July but cannot use the dispossessory process.
Last Review and Update: Sep 27, 2011