QUESTION: Dear Legal Wiz,
I live in Miami, but visit Jamaica twice per year. Tenants who live in my house at Vineyard Town did not pay the electricity bill for a while, and I had to pay off over J200,000.00.
Now one of them, a teacher stopped paying rent. I took her to court in a second case for recovery of possession, and she didnt show at the times I went. When I returned to Jamaica, they told me she came when I didnt so there is no order as yet. It seems she only turns up when she knows I am off the island. The Judge in the first case for back rent, told her to pay me some money and she didnt, so I went to pay the bailiff and they did not take m money.
I hired a lawyer to sell the house with them in it, but she says she wont do anything about the tenants. I dont understand her either because I had to do most of the work. She is only drafting the contract and collecting the monies. She told me at one time no buyer yet, but when I went to ask for my papers and title, the secretary told me the lawyer who was out of office, did not leave anything in my file. I already paid her huge sums. On a recent visit, the secretary told me that there were papers to sign but the file were at the stamp office to be stamped.
What can you do for me?
Dear Essie O’Bryan,
In regards to all your issues, you will need someone who can operate locally for you in your absence, who is knowledgeable of the procedures necessary. Our Legal wiz team can assist you for a fee, and you will additionally have to grant authorisation with a power-of-attorney document which must be registered.
Some investigation needs to be done into your issues raised. For one, you need to understand fully what is going on with the attorney regarding your property. If she is not representing you properly you can demand for your file and report her for disciplinary action to the General Legal Council. She may wind up refunding you too.
Regarding the tenants, it seems strange that the attorney you paid to sell your property is doing nothing regarding the removal of the tenants as you wish. Nonetheless, a proper update on both your matters with the teacher need to be researched, before the next steps can be decided.
If you already have a Court order for example, you may not need to appear in court or start another claim. You simply will just need to take steps to get the order reissued. If the Judge already ordered that she pay some monies for back rent, then you just need to take steps to get it.
On all the above our team will assist you.