What are a tenant’s rights regarding late fees?

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What are a tenant’s rights regarding late fees?

I was a renter. We paid late a few times but were never issued a late fee even though they were stated in the contract. Now that we are out of the house, the landlord is trying to keep our deposit stating that we paid late and did not pay our late fees. Is this legal?

Asked on October 29, 2012 under Real Estate Law, South Carolina

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country, late fees cannot be taken out of the security deposit unless the lease agreement states such. If the landlord failed to assess late fees for rent on a timely basis then under the laws of all states it would appear that the landlord waived such fees.

I would write the landlord demanding the amount withheld from your security deposit to be paid by a certain date and if not, then your recourse seems to be small claims court.


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