QUESTION: Dear Legal Wiz,
A tenant brought me to court for security deposit knowing full well that she stopped paying my rent.
I told the Resident Magistrate that I didnt refund her because she owes me rent, and she got a lawyer who planned against me and won.
I need to appeal the matter and wanted to get some assistance. I dont have money for a lawyer. Can someone in your network assist?
RESPONSE: Dear Ron Jackson,
Based on what you have outlined, it does not appear as if you can ever be successful in your appeal and so the persons I approached have declined to assist even for a fee. By law, it is illegal to demand a security deposit from the tenant. It is true that some Resident Magistrates allow it, but under extreme circumstances. The main situation is so that the landlord/landlady can get compensation for damages done to the property or to clear utilities. Security deposit if and when allowed is not seen as rent and the two are kept separate in the Court when the argument for security deposit is entertained.
The responses to the varied submitted questions are drafted by our inhouse journalist, after research and consultations with attornies-at-law. It is not to be assumed therefore that all members of the Legal Wiz team are trained and practicing attornies-at-law, realtors, investigators, but being a part of the network such personnel utilise their skills for the success of the ultimate client.