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Breaking my lease due to husbands deployment to afghanastan.

Everett, WA |

i would like to move back to my homestate while my husband is deployed. he is currently gone to trainging and leaves to afghanastan for 9 months in a few days. we currently have a lease signed to end jan. 31st of 2011. can i break my lease so i can move home? what do i need to do to get out of the lease? do i have to pay to break the lease or can i give notice and his deployment papers? im stuck and want to go home :( please help.

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Washington Law does permit a member of the armed forces or military to terminate a lease upon receiving deployment or reassignment orders. However, such notice should be delivered to the landlord within 7 days of receipt. As such you should obtain a written document of the deployment order and provide this to the landlord.

    See RCW 59.18.220, which reads as follows:

    Termination of tenancy for a specified time — Armed forces exception.
    (1) In all cases where premises are rented for a specified time, by express or implied contract, the tenancy shall be deemed terminated at the end of such specified time.

    (2) Any tenant who is a member of the armed forces, including the national guard and armed forces reserves, or that tenant's spouse or dependent, may terminate a tenancy for a specified time if the tenant receives reassignment or deployment orders. The tenant shall provide notice of the reassignment or deployment order to the landlord no later than seven days after receipt.


  2. Mr. Foster is exactly right. There is a sub-section in the RLTA (look around .200) that says you provide copies of the deployment/relocation orders to the landlord and go. They can't penalize you for this. Hope this helps. - Elizabeth Powell