Should I appeal a security deposit case?

Asked over 2 years ago - Philadelphia, PA

I am a landlord who had to evict a tenant for failure to pay rent. the case went on for over 6 months & finally the common pleas court ruled in my favor that the tenant owed me rent. during that time the tenant moved & i sent a letter that the security deposit was being held until all legal matters were done (within 30 days of them moving out). the tenant recently sued me for the security deposit & won. i had countersued for property damage & items stolen out of the house. the judge said that since i did not provide an itemized list of damage within 30 days i was at fault & the tenant received double the security deposit. shouldn't the judge have thrown out my counter suit for damage (since i didn't provide the itemized letter) but still given me credit for sending the letter in 30 da

Attorney answers (1)

  1. Shannon Katherine McDonald

    Contributor Level 13

    Answered . The law provides that it must be an itemized list of damages, and not just a blanket letter deciding to keep the security deposit. Does the lease say that you can keep the security deposit to cover unpaid rents? If it does, you should appeal for that. Although you didn't mention it at trial, so it is going to be a difficult argument to make.

    Often on appeal you have to put up an appeal bond in the amount of the judgement against you, so be aware of that.

    There may be other, more technical issues you can appeal. No attorney is going to be able to identify those on this forum. So you might consider talking to an appeals attorney. You should not delay if you decide to appeal. The timelines for appeals are very short.

    Best of luck,

    Shannon K. McDonald

Related Topics

Landlord-tenant law

Landlord-tenant law is governed mostly by state laws, and covers issues like security deposit limits and deadlines, evictions, and the right to withhold rent.

Security deposits for renting

A security deposit is a refundable fee a landlord can use if a tenant violates lease terms, causes damage, or leaves the rental in unacceptable condition.

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