Philadelphia Landlord Tenant Security Deposit Lawyer
Unfortunately, it often seems to be the rule – instead of the exception – that Landlords and Tenants are at odds. The landlord-tenant paradigm is such that both need one another, and should, at least theoretically, be motivated to work together towards a mutually beneficial relationship. Yet, this is not always the case, as many Landlord-Tenant Relationships are often adversarial, and the parties end up finding themselves in court. Sometimes tenants are simply miserable occupants. They make late rent payments, prove bothersome to neighbors, damage the property, etc. But other times, the fault lays with the landlord. Many feel that they can operate their property however they chose, irrespective of law or contract. They feel empowered as the owner of the property, and, ignoring the rights of their tenants, hold that they must be subservient. But their feelings are in error. Tenants have rights under the law concerning the Landlord-Tenant relationship. One of the many rights they posses is the right to the return of their security deposit. Too often, landlords try to avoid returning the security deposit, coming up with every conceivable reason to hold onto the tenant’s money and increase their revenue. Do not just sit back and let your former landlord keep your money. Call The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. today to speak with one of our attorneys about getting your money back!
The Law in Pennsylvania
The law under P.C.S.A Section 250.512 provides requirements for both the Landlord and Tenant with respect to security deposits. First, let’s address your primary responsibility as the tenant. You must provide you landlord with written notice of your new address upon termination of your prior contract. It is not the landlord’s responsibility to invest resources to track you down. If you fail to meet this obligation you will be constructively relieving your landlord of their obligation to return these funds. If you are worried about providing this written notice we would be happy to help you.
As far as the landlord’s responsibilities, they are required to provide you an itemized written accounting for any damages for which they are holding you liable within 30 days of either the termination of the lease or your surrender of the property. They must include with this listing the remainder of the security deposit beyond actual damages.
If the landlord fails to provide this list and the remainder of the deposit within the prescribed 30 day time frame then they forfeit their right to withhold any portion of the deposit or to bring suit against the tenant for damages to the property. The tenant, however, may bring suit, and do so for double damages – that is, double the amount of the security deposit. It will fall on the landlord to prove damages to the property. This is a unique situation in that the burden shifts from the plaintiff to the defendant in these cases.
Landlords expect you to give up. They know that suit requires both time and money on the tenant’s part, and they try to exploit this fact. Let us help you teach them a lesson. If you are owed part or all of your Security Deposit, The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. can help. Call today to schedule a free consultation.
This content was written on behalf of Greg Prosmushkin.