See if you can get a mutual termination and tell them your situation. If you leave, they can sue for breach but maybe someone in the company will realize there is nothing to collect or better yet, they have a child in college and actually have a heart.Good luck and I hope it works out.
You are required to return the house as received, normal wear and tear excepted. If you did infest the house with fleas, that is not normal wear and tear. The burden is on the LL to prove you caused this but if there is no mention of fleas on the move in inspection and certainly you would not have moved in if there were, odds are you caused the problem and he can recover the cost to fix the issue
No lender in their right mind would simply change the locks and assume you have abandoned the property, especially since once the open the door, they see all your goods. In Ga they must file a dispossessory or its a wrongful eviction. Send a demand letter and ask for all your goods and the cost of anything that was missing and if they dont reply, file suit,
Make sure you get an attorney and file an answer. This is a subrogation case so the insurance company paid the landlord and now wants you to pay them claiming that you caused the fire. You may have to bring in your landlord if he was responsible for the faulty installation of the fan
File a materialmans lien if you are within 90 days of your last date of work. Then you can sue in small claims court, but you will have to file a notice of filing suit and the lien and notice are very technical so you should get a lawyer. If you dont want to file a lien, just sue in small claims court. If you win you get a judgment lien on any property owned by the defendant in the county where you record the writ of execution
First off, you do not have to leave until they file a disposessory. Next, I would need to know how much time, if any was left on your lease. There is a law that protects tentants in foreclosure under certain circumstances so get with a landlord tenant attorney, tell them the facts and they can tell you how long you can stay and what to argue in reply to a dispossessory
If you quitclaim the deed to your spouse that will not effect the obligation on the mortgage and it may in fact trigger a "due on sale" clause making the entire note due now. You need to think out all the steps you are going to take and make sure you consider the effects of what you are doing. Get with an attorney to give you advise.
You should make a demand for it in writing and if you do not get it back, or at least an explanation as to why it has been retained, consider filing suit. You would need to know the basis of the landlords decision to retain the funds and also whether the landlord owns more that 10 units as that will effect your rights to recover. The landlord can retain the funds for past due rent. Unless you know why the landlord held the money, and depending on the amount, you want want to see an attorney or...
On a residential lease you have the defense of paying the rent that is due and any court fees and late fees (assuming they are enforceable) and its a total defense to the dispo if the dispo is based on non payment of rent. If they have not sued yet, you may want to tell them that even if they do file suit to evict you have a defense so why not take the money now and get this resolved. If they do sue, then file an answer and assert this defense but you need to be prepared to pay the money.
Georgia law is very clear and the judge has no discretion to give you any leeway. You defaulted by not paying rent and then failed to answer the complaint. unless you work out something with the landlord, you can be evicted any day now. Borrow money or try to convince your LL to give you a break