the lease isn't up until August and my tenant said he is going to move next month (February), which is in two weeks. if I have to take him to court for not giving written notice and breaking the lease, what is the statute in Colorado state law that I can reference when I sue?
Quick scan with Google found:
CRS 13-40-107. Notice to quit.
(1) A tenancy may be terminated by notice in writing, served not less than the respective period fixed before the end of the applicable tenancy, as follows:
(a) A tenancy for one year or longer, three months;
(b) A tenancy of six months or longer but less than a year, one month;
(c) A tenancy of one month or longer but less than six months, ten days;
(d) A tenancy of one week or longer but less than one month, or a tenancy at will, three days;
(e) A tenancy for less than one week, one day.
(2) Such notice shall describe the property and the particular time when the tenancy will terminate and shall be signed by the landlord or tenant, the party giving such notice or his agent or attorney.
(3) Any person in possession of real property with the assent of the owner is presumed to be a tenant at will until the contrary is shown.
(4) No notice to quit shall be necessary from or to a tenant whose term is, by agreement, to end at a time certain. (5) Except as otherwise provided in section 38-33-112, C.R.S., the provisions of subsections (1) and (4) of this section shall not apply to the termination of a residential tenancy during the ninety-day period provided for in said section.
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Personal Injury Lawyer
It is general contract law. The contract (rental agreement) should state the required amount of notice a tenant must give to break the fixed term lease and the damages he should pay if he does break the lease. If the contract does not state these terms you can file suit for the balance of the lease. However you must use reasonable efforts to re-let the residence or be liable for waste.
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My colleagues have given you the CO statute and they are correct. I am a former judge and do a lot of landlord/tenant law. If the lease was for less than 6 months, which sounds impossible if it is only up in August, then they gave you sufficient notice. Otherwise, they did not give you sufficient notice under CO statute. However, understand that you have a duty to mitigate your damages and to try to re-rent the premises to someone else and not just expect the prior tenant to pay for the duration of the lease. Additionally, make sure that you read the CO statute concerning retention of the security deposit carefully and send them written notice as to why you are keep some or all of the security deposit by certified mail return receipt required, so that they do not sue you for treble damages. You do not have to send them the notice by certified mail. However, I suggest to send it by both first class and certified mail so that they can't claim that they never received it.
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