What legal rights do I have when my ex-landlord is trying to charge me over $3000 after I’ve already moved out?

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What legal rights do I have when my ex-landlord is trying to charge me over $3000 after I’ve already moved out?

2 months ago, I was told on the 3rd that my lease would not be renewed and to be out of the apartment by the 31st and to leave my keys in the apartment. So I moved out and left my keys. Now I am being told that I owe them $900 in past rent, plus 445 for november rent because they say they did not get my keys, plus over $2000 in other fees and things. Now I have no clue what to do because I do not have the money to pay that much and I don’t believe I owe them all that money.

Asked on December 28, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Missouri

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Here is the issue. It seems your landlord doesn't understand the law and requirements therein about his responsibilities to you. You need to contact the consumer protection agency in your town, county or state that handles consumer protection issues and specifically landlord tenant matters. File the complaint and show your proof like that you were given the letter to move out when the lease was done, that you do not owe back monies and you left the keys there (which you probably in hindsight should have handed to him) and that you never received a breakdown of your security deposit uses by the landlord (cleaning and repair costs and the proof thereof). In most states, the landlord cannot claim anything against you if he fails to provide you the security deposit breakdown and receipts of the deductions from it within a certain statutory timeframe. So if it has been over one month or 45 days, chances are he will lose at the lawsuit level if he never gave you that list.


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