If my landlord refuses to give me any invoices or an itemized list for deductions from my deposit, would I be able to sue for treble damages?

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If my landlord refuses to give me any invoices or an itemized list for deductions from my deposit, would I be able to sue for treble damages?

I paid rent on my previous apartment through last month but my live-in landlord had already cleaned up and cleaned out my remaining belongings at least 2 days before my official move-out date and charged me for it. I was not given the opportunity to do a walk-through or finish moving out. I sent a demand letter for the amount he had unfairly charged me for as well as requested an itemized deduction list and invoices for what he had charged me and I was denied all requests. It has now been 26 days since the premature severance of my lease. Do I have a case? And, if so, can I sue for treble damages?

Asked on August 24, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

From what you have written about you have a valid claim for the return of your entire security deposit if your former landlord refuses to give you the required itemization of the debits from your security deposit. Likewise, if the statute that your former landlord seemingly violated allows for treble damages for the statute's violation, then you can seek treble damages as well. It seems to me that you have a dispute best resolved in small claims court. However, you might wish to consult a landlord tenant attorney for further direction.


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