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Can you be held accountable for paying collections on a apartment when you lived there you were only 16

Vancouver, WA |

i had moved in with a friend and signed leasing papers as a roommate because i wasn't 18 i moved out and she go evicted and it has been in collections for a very long time and now they are trying to garnish my wages

Attorney Answers 2


  1. I am not a Washington lawyer, so you should check with one to be sure. I would think that you are bound by this contract for at least two reasons. 1) It is a contract for a necessity, (shelter), and such contracts are usually enforceable. 2) In order to get out of a contract signed as a minor, you would have had to disavow the contract within a reasonable time after turning 18. It does not sound like this was done.

    See here for more information: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=26.28

    Since it appears that you may be stuck with this arrangement, you might try to work out some kind of payment plan with them that you could live with.

    James Frederick

    *** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state.


  2. I agree with the previous answer. Another thing to consider is how long it has been since the contract was entered into. Depending on the details, the claim may be barred by the statute of limitations. In addition, depending on the terms of the contract you signed, you may not be liable for the consequence's of your roommate's eviction.

    It'd be best to discuss everything with an attorney to decide your best options for resolving this matter as quickly as possible. As noted, you could likely set up a payment plan under a settlement agreement that would mutually beneficial for you and the creditor/landlord.