What to do if my rent deposit is overdue by 70 days?

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What to do if my rent deposit is overdue by 70 days?

I have tried multiple times to contact them (phone and email), yet still have not received the check. There were no problems that would have caused me to not receive my deposit. By law, I am entitled to double the rent after 60 days. Am I able to sue the apartment manager who lives in St. Joseph, Missouri, or do I have to send a summons to the owner of the apartment complex, who lives in California? Can I add on court fees to the small claims case? If they finally do send the deposit back, can I still sue? I am not concerned with money but I am afraid that this business ethic will not cease.

Asked on December 14, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Missouri

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You could most likely sue the property manager in order to be able to bring a small claims action; if it turns out that the property manager has some defense to liability, you would then have to sue the landlord which would require suing in county court and serving in CA (you can't bring a cross-state action in small claims court.) Legally, if you are entitled to double your deposit for the delay, even if you get the deposit back, you could still sue for the balance (the extra amount); I believe that you would also be entitled to court fees in this case and should certainly include them in your complaint since, worst case, the court will simply disallow them.


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