What to do if my roommate won’t give back my portion of the security deposit?

UPDATED: Sep 9, 2011

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What to do if my roommate won’t give back my portion of the security deposit?

Upon move-in I paid first month’s rent and security deposit for an addendum. Then signed new 1 year lease which was in both of our names. The full amount of security deposit stated paid in full (her deposit) just carried over. I have receipt of the check I wrote her and the copy of the lease. Is that enough to get my money back in small claims? If so is it worth it for a lease of $1,200 with court fees?

Asked on September 9, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you have a written agreement for the lease of your rental with your roommate where you paid the first month's lease and the security deposit as well as a copy of the check to your roommate stating such by you, then you should have sufficient documentation showing that you are entitled to a return of the portion of the security deposit paid to the landlord that your roommate apparently will not return.

Small claims court filings are not that much out of pocket (estimate $50.00) and the service of the summons and complaint should not be much more than $35.00. If you prevail in your action against your roommate, you would be entitled to these costs, the amount of the money you gave her and possibly accrued interets.

Good luck.

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