NSW Separation - Shared Lease to Property with Ex - What to Do?

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dean James

2 September 2015
I recently left NSW to go to WA to try and find permanent work and once I left, my partner told me not to come back. I was devastated so I went home to Tasmania for 2 months but have now returned to NSW.

The lease of the property I was living in with my ex partner was in both our names. Obviously I can't move back into that house but there is a unit at the back of the property which I can share with the present male tenant who has a separate lease to the house..

Is there any legal reason why I can't move into the unit? I don't want to get there and have the Police called to ask me to leave. There was a few nasty text messages between us when the separation took place but never has there been any violence.


Well-Known Member
16 July 2014
Hi Dean

Sorry to hear about the situation you have been placed in.

Your rights in this situation will be governed by both the lease document itself and the Residential Tenancies Act 2010 (NSW). If your name is still on the lease, then the rights and obligations of the lease are likely to still apply to you.

Things that might affect your rights in this situation could include:
  • Whether you have been contributing to the rent in the same proportion as what was agreed in the lease or agreed between the other tenant and you; and
  • Whether any breach notices have been sent by the landlord which may change your rights under the lease.
Short of intervention from the police (AVOs etc), I am not sure that your ex could have you kicked out of the lease, but you might consider contacting your landlord to confirm that the lease still remains in place and that your name is still on it.

Also, you should remember that while your name is on the lease you are still likely to be jointly and severally liable for the obligations in the lease such as the payment of rent. So if your ex defaults on rent, damages property etc you may also be liable. You should seriously consider your future plans and whether it might be the best option for you to be taken off the lease.

There are really helpful residential tenancy authorities in each state who can help with these matters and provide more specific advice for your situation. In NSW, you might try: Tenants NSW - Tenants NSW

All the best.