Collections on a joint account - do I owe all of it?

My ex and I shared an apartment and had to move before we paid the last months rent. Since I was the secondary on the lease, am I responsible for the whole amount or half of the amount owed?

Reply from

Unfortunately there really is no such thing as secondary on a lease. When you cosign, you agree to be 100% responsible for the debt if the other person doesn't pay. And if it's not resolved before it goes to collections, you could wind up with a collection account on your credit reports for the full amount. It will stay there for seven years and may significantly affect your credit scores.

If there is any way for you to resolve the debt before it gets to that point, it could be in your best interest to do so. If you can't pay it all at once, perhaps the landlord will allow you to make payments. Just make sure you get any agreement in writing and that it stipulates you won't be sent to collections or any negative reporting to the collection agencies if you make the agreed upon payment.

By the way, you can get and monitor your personal credit score for free at Nav.

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