Sharjah: A single mother in Sharjah has come under a huge financial liability because she signed a Dh85,000 tenancy contract for a friend who failed to pay the rent.
Pakistani expat Summiayya Kamran was shocked to learn she was found liable in early October by a Sharjah rental court for Dh78,450 in the remaining rent and legal charges.
Kamran signed the tenancy contract in 2015 as a favour to a Pakistani couple whose UAE visas were under process at the time.
The understanding was that the rent cheques would be signed by the friend, who would transfer the contract under her name once the visas came through.
Kamran, 39, said some of the rent cheques given by her friend bounced but she was verbally informed by the building’s management the dishonoured cheque would not create a problem for Kamran as it was not under her name.
When the tenancy contract ended in 2016, Kamran handed over the keys of the two-bedroom apartment in Al Taawun area to the management.
Kamran said her friend told her she would settle the rent and transfer the contract in her name.
Kamran and her friend gradually lost touch over time and the friend’s mobile number was discontinued from service.
Two years later, when Kamran applied to cancel her visa in early October, she learnt there was a civil case against her.
“Because the rent was not paid by my friend, and because the contract was under my name, the landlord filed a case against me for Dh78,450 in unpaid rent and legal fees.
"But I was never informed. The mobile number on the contract is not mine. But I had given the management my mobile number and told them to call me if there was ever any problem,” Kamran said.
“Now I can’t get a new visa because of the case and I have already cancelled my daughter’s visa.”
Kamran wanted to cancel her visa from the bank in Dubai where she was working and get a new visa from a company in Ajman that offered her a job.
“Why was this case filed so late? I travelled to Pakistan in 2016 and came back without any problems. If there was a case against me then, it would have been flagged up. Also in 2016, my visa was renewed without an issue. The rent cheques were not mine but I’m the one stuck in this case.”
Kamran said she does not know what action, if any, has been taken against her friend.
Kamran, who has a 13-year-old daughter, said: “Now I have no visa or job. My daughter’s visa is cancelled. My visa expired around a week ago. And I don’t have the money to clear this case; I hope someone can help me.”
Kamran has been living in the UAE for 14 years.