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Property manager owes us money, need help with small claims court filing

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FlyingRon

Senior Member
If the tenant has moved out properly (no damage, proper notice, et al), you need to send them at least the amount of the deposit on the lease. You have 30 days and all your other drama won't get you out of that. It's immaterial what the seller did or what your property manager did, you as the property owner have 30 days to return the deposit.

If the tenant wants to sue you over the alleged "second month," you can deal with that then. Unless there is some indication that these checks were to include that much deposit (like she paid many times the rent at the same time as taking the unit), it's not going to be as compelling as the literal copy of the lease.
 


zoelee

Active Member
If the tenant has moved out properly (no damage, proper notice, et al), you need to send them at least the amount of the deposit on the lease. You have 30 days and all your other drama won't get you out of that. It's immaterial what the seller did or what your property manager did, you as the property owner have 30 days to return the deposit.

If the tenant wants to sue you over the alleged "second month," you can deal with that then. Unless there is some indication that these checks were to include that much deposit (like she paid many times the rent at the same time as taking the unit), it's not going to be as compelling as the literal copy of the lease.
The lease only states one month rent.
 

zoelee

Active Member
Has the tenant sued you for return of the extra amount collected by your former property manager as a security deposit? You will want to hold onto everything as it relates to that tenant for if/when you are sued - and you can use these same documents to support your claim against the property manager.

Has a date been set yet for a hearing on your small claims lawsuit against the property manager?
Not yet. We are applying for alternative service, which is to post the paper on his door. I suppose after that, depending on his action, I'll know the date.
 

quincy

Senior Member
Although the property manager is a common denominator, you have two separate legal concerns. One is recovering funds from your property manager that he (allegedly illegally) withheld from you, and one is to satisfy the terms of the lease with your tenant that (by law) requires you to refund security deposits not used to cover legitimate damages.

There is an overlap here created by the property manager but these are not the same legal matters. I recommend you handle the security deposit refund first as that is the most pressing. You have only a small window of time to act.
 

zoelee

Active Member
Although the property manager is a common denominator, you have two separate legal concerns. One is recovering funds from your property manager that he (allegedly illegally) withheld from you, and one is to satisfy the terms of the lease with your tenant that (by law) requires you to refund security deposits not used to cover legitimate damages.

There is an overlap here created by the property manager but these are not the same legal matters. I recommend you handle the security deposit refund first as that is the most pressing. You have only a small window of time to act.
the tenant still lives there. they are on good terms with us. they wanted to break the contract due to the PM's ignoring their repair requests. but after we fired the PM, we've made the requested repair. So I hope they are going to stay for a while.

Right now we are suing the PM for stolen rent. While we are at it, I wonder if we should attach this one month rent to our case. But if her payment pictures are not enough evidence, I wonder we should keep it separate.
 

quincy

Senior Member
the tenant still lives there. they are on good terms with us. they wanted to break the contract due to the PM's ignoring their repair requests. but after we fired the PM, we've made the requested repair. So I hope they are going to stay for a while.

Right now we are suing the PM for stolen rent. While we are at it, I wonder if we should attach this one month rent to our case. But if her payment pictures are not enough evidence, I wonder we should keep it separate.
Oh. I am sorry I misunderstood the situation. When you said the property manager was served, I assumed he was personally served. I am happy that your tenant is not (at this point) demanding a security deposit refund equal to two months rent.

Any evidence you have showing the property manager withheld funds that should have been forwarded to you or that should have been deposited in your account can be used in your small claims suit.

You should contact a lawyer in your area for help in getting your lawsuit from where it is now to where it needs to be.

Good luck.
 

zoelee

Active Member
Oh. I am sorry I misunderstood the situation. When you said the property manager was served, I assumed he was personally served. I am happy that your tenant is not (at this point) demanding a security deposit refund equal to two months rent.

Any evidence you have showing the property manager withheld funds that should have been forwarded to you or that should have been deposited in your account can be used in your small claims suit.

You should contact a lawyer in your area for help in getting your lawsuit from where it is now to where it needs to be.

Good luck.
I don't think my tenant's checks are enough evidence. There is nothing written on the check that contains the word "deposit". Nothing written on the check as a matter of fact. A check could be easily interpreted as the rent. Even if my tenant showed up in court to confront the PM, it would be my tenant's words against PM's.

I could sue the PM at a later time with my tenant, when the tenant gives the move out notice.
 

quincy

Senior Member
I don't think my tenant's checks are enough evidence. There is nothing written on the check that contains the word "deposit". Nothing written on the check as a matter of fact. A check could be easily interpreted as the rent. Even if my tenant showed up in court to confront the PM, it would be my tenant's words against PM's.

I could sue the PM at a later time with my tenant, when the tenant gives the move out notice.
Or the tenant could sue you.

But right now your concentration should be on the actual demonstrable losses you have suffered.

Good luck.
 

zoelee

Active Member
Just realized if I add this deposit to my filed claim, the sum will be bummed up and exceed 10,000, which is the max of small claims case.
 

zoelee

Active Member
Good morning forum,

After being served normally and publicly, the defendant didn't respond. We sort of expected this.

Now we would like to request a default judgement hearing.

I found the form on the country court website. But there is no instruction on the matter. The form implies that the same request form has to be sent to the defendant.

I also googled but it seems all information is about how the defendant can set aside a default judgement, nothing on the plaintiff side.

I would like some advice on the official steps of requesting a default judgement hearing please.

Thanks very much,
 

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