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Security Deposit Refund (Past 21-days)

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Milo987

New member
What is the name of your state? CA

Hi, I vacated my unit 3 months ago, however my landlord has not refunded my Sec. deposit or provided a statement of deduction. I have been emailing them and asking but every time they told me that they would look at it but they did not. In my last email I mentioned the 21 days limit and they finally responded me. they sent me an itemized form for deductions. part for cleaning, part for paint and part for unpaid rent (last 15 days, per diem). Right after I moved out I provided them with my forwarding address and the pics I took when I first moved in (dirty paint and dirty unit). My question is, am I not entitled to be refunded the full deposit at this point since they did not respond whiting the 21-day time limit. How should I approach the management at this point? (California)
Thanks
 


Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
What is the name of your state? CA

Hi, I vacated my unit 3 months ago, however my landlord has not refunded my Sec. deposit or provided a statement of deduction. I have been emailing them and asking but every time they told me that they would look at it but they did not. In my last email I mentioned the 21 days limit and they finally responded me. they sent me an itemized form for deductions. part for cleaning, part for paint and part for unpaid rent (last 15 days, per diem). Right after I moved out I provided them with my forwarding address and the pics I took when I first moved in (dirty paint and dirty unit). My question is, am I not entitled to be refunded the full deposit at this point since they did not respond whiting the 21-day time limit. How should I approach the management at this point? (California)
Thanks
If they won't refund it, you sue them. They can counterclaim for the damages. What this means is that, theoretically, you can both "win" your cases, and walk out of court with nothing.
 

FarmerJ

Senior Member
If your state has a penalty to a landlord for failing to address this with in the 21 day time frame and you sue then ask for full refund and the penalty in your filing the penalty could off set a counter suit amount and you would still come out okay. STOP emailing this LL , email is not the same as a written on paper letter sent via certificate of mailing, confirmed mail delivery or certified mail. Its just too easy to deny that a email was received in court and get away with it since there is no actual provable trail compared to offering to a court a copy of a letter that was sent certificate of mailing, confirmed mail delivery or certified mail, fed ex, registered return receipt mail,
 

Milo987

New member
Thank you, I know that in CA there are laws and penalties against the 21day rule, however I am not exactly sure or aware of the details.
 
Milo, You are permitted to sue in Small Claims of no more then 10,000 dollars and a valid claim is up to 3 times the amount of the security deposit that is held past the 21 days. The amount will be awarded once the Judge determines if the LandLord tried to keep your amount in Bad faith and then will go from there.
A strong case law we use in California that reviews this subject can be found here. Its a technical document but if your bored and want to get into the nitty-gritty here's a link: https://law.justia.com/cases/california/supreme-court/4th/9/738.html

If the Landlord keeps your security deposit in good faith and does not refund you as Zinger spoke of in his post, the Landlord will rightfully countersue to recover lose expenses but Im sure it will be nowhere near hopefully what you would owe back. Good Luck!
 
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