How should I get my deposit from my landlord back?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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How should I get my deposit from my landlord back?

We moved out and left the place
immaculate. Spoke with landlord and his
real estate agent and was told the
security deposit was to be returned.
Went back and forth for awhile and now
he will not speak to myself or my
girlfriend who was on the lease as
well. 1350. This was two years ago we
have been trying to handle it

Asked on March 17, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

The way to get a security deposit back when the landlord wrongfully withholds it (i.e. when you were fully paid up on rent, and there was no damage beyond normal "wear and tear") is to sue him for it. You sue based on "breach of contract," since the obligations in regard to the deposit flow out of the lease which, whether written or oral, is a contact. In your state, the statute of limitations, or time within which you must initiate a lawsuit, for breach of contract is 4 years for an oral (unwritten) contract and 5 years for a written one, so you should still be within time to sue. If the amount at stake is less than the limit for small claims court, suing in small claims, as your own attorney ("pro se") is a very good option.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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