Sample Letter Demanding Return of Security Deposit
|Prepared By: Melissa C. Marsh, Los Angeles Landlord-Tenant Attorney
Written: June 2009
Updated: March 2015
This is just a starting point. This letter does not address the issue of interest that may be owed, or other facts that may be important.
Via Priority Mail with Delivery Confirmation
Landlordís Full Name
Landlordís Street Address
Landlordís City, State and Zip
Re: Demand For Return Of Security Deposit
Dear Landlordís Name:
On __________________, 20__, I moved into Complete Address of Your Rental Unit.
When I moved in I paid a security deposit in the amount of $____ in the form of a check, money order, cash and for which you did or did not provide a receipt. A copy is / is not attached.
On __________________, 20__, I provided you with my written notice to vacate the premises. A copy is attached.
On _________________, 20__, I did vacate the premises, but I have not yet received a refund of my security deposit. I know that California law, found at Civil Code Section 1950.5, says that a landlord must return my security deposit within 21 after the tenant moves. The law also says that the only lawful deductions that can be taken from the security deposit are those needed to pay for: any unpaid rent [if applicable add, (unless the rent was waived; my rent was waived pursuant to the stipulated judgment we signed on _____________ ], for cleaning but only to bring the rental back to the same condition in which it was rented to me, and for repairs beyond normal wear and tear.
When I left the rental, it was clean and in good repair, or in no worse repair than when I moved in [if applicable add, and I have pictures to prove this]. Therefore, under the law I am entitled to a full refund of my security deposit. I am now making a [If applicable add second] demand for the return of my security deposit. If I do not receive my money within 7 days, I will regard your keeping my security deposit as bad faith and will pursue my right to sue you not only for the return of the security deposit I paid, but also for two times the original amount paid (bad faith damages) as allowed by law.
The prompt return of my security deposit will make a court action unnecessary. Please mail the security deposit to me at:
Your Full Name
Your Street Address
Your City, State and Zip
Your Full Name
[If applicableÖ] Enclosures. Copy of my receipt [or check] for my security deposit and copy of my notice to vacate the rental unit.
If you would like to have Ms. Marsh help your prepare a professional demand letter based on your specific situation, or a response to your landlord for failing to return your full security deposit, please schedule a telephone consultation, or E-mail Your Request.
© 2009 Melissa C. Marsh. All Rights Reserved.