New York City Security Deposit Dispute Attorney
At The Price Law Firm in Manhattan, we know from experience that the rights and responsibilities that go along with security deposits are frequently misunderstood by landlords and tenants alike. To learn about the best ways to avoid and resolve disputes over the tenant’s right to recover deposits at the end of the lease, contact our office for the advice of an experienced real estate attorney. Call (212) 675-1125 for a free consultation.
Having represented clients on both sides of the landlord-tenant divide on security deposit matters, we know about the mistakes that either party can make when dealing with them:
- From the tenant’s standpoint, it is essential to understand that a security deposit cannot be applied toward the last month’s rent. The security deposit is meant to cover such expenses as cleaning that the tenant should have performed, repairing damage caused by the tenant, or undoing tenant alterations made without authorization.
- From the landlord’s perspective, security deposits are not to be treated as free money at the end of a lease that can be refunded if and when the tenant bothers to put up a fight for it. Many property owners and managers assume that a security deposit dispute involving residential property will be too small for civil litigation, and that the tenant will often just walk away from it.
What these landlords overlook is that the prevailing party in a dispute over a security deposit will normally be entitled to attorneys fees as part of the judgment, which can very substantially increase the financial risk of noncompliance with the terms of the lease.
Manhattan Lease Deposit Dispute Attorney
At The Price Law Firm, we handle security deposits of all kinds in both residential and commercial rental situations. Sometimes these cases are fairly simple, while others arise as counterclaims or secondary claims in larger disputes between landlords and tenants.
Especially in the commercial leasing context, a tenant’s claim for an unrefunded deposit might come up as a counterclaim to the landlord’s claim for damages related to early termination, anticipatory breach of the lease, or damage to the property in violation of the lease.