How do I go about filing a civil suit aginst my landlord?

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How do I go about filing a civil suit aginst my landlord?

My previous landlord refuses to return my security deposit because I violated the terms of our lease agreement. However, the only reason I did this was because she violated it first. Our lease states that if I do not give them 30 days notice prior to moving out then we forfeit the deposit. It also states that she must give us 24 hours written notice before entering the property for any reason other than an emergency. She entered the home without my consent, without preoper notice, and touched my things. I moved out immediately. Do I have a chance of getting the deposit back?

Asked on June 20, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Indiana

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

From my experience the 30 day notice concerning termination of one's lease could result in the forfeiture of one's presumed security deposit would under most statutes of all states in this country be in violation of public policy and void.

A security deposit is for damage that the tenant may have caused at the end of the lease and is not to be used as a penalty. From what you have written, it appears that you have a good chance of prevailing against your former landlord in small claims court for the return of your security deposit based upon what you have written.


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