Security Deposits

Landlords of residential properties should be cautious in following the requirements of Chapter 5321.16 of the Ohio Revised Code which deals with procedures for the refunding of security deposits.   ORC 5321.16(B) provides for written notice to be delivered to the tenants together with all amounts due tenants from unapplied deposits within thirty (30) days after termination of the rental agreement and delivery of possession.  Deductions must be itemized and identified in the notice.  Any landlord non-compliance with the Statute is subject to recovery of double damages by the tenant and reasonable attorney’s fees.  Although these procedures are long standing and well established in Ohio law, property owners who are not regularly engaged in the renting of residential properties should be mindful of their obligations and develop a method and means of providing for an accounting of the security deposit.  It is also important for tenants, in order to seek enforcement of these requirements, that the landlord be provided, in writing with a forwarding address to which the notice may be sent by the landlord.

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    James B. Harrison

    James Harrison practices in the firm’s Business Law Practice Area. He has represented and counseled hundreds of businesses and organizations, including start-ups and emerging growth companies in all aspects of business law, including mergers, acquisitions, sale or other equity events as well as strategy around operations, funding, and exit.

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