In a perfect world, all tenants and landlords get along. But, since that isn't the case, it's important to know your rights on both ends when handling issues.
Suzanne Latacz says her former landlord owes her a security deposit, but months later hasn't seen it.
Thursday's informational clinic moderated by Judge Judith Hawkins helped her out.
"We came out to see what we could find out and got some good advice," Latacz said.
"We left the apartment and did everything we were supposed to, but they wouldn't refund our money, so now were going to have to go to small claims and get it."
Eviction notices, court appearances and small claims were all discussed.
Through Florida law, Judge Hawkins says landlords have most power in a dispute.
"I took four pages of notes so yes very helpful," said Kristina Tchourioukanova, a property manager.
"I work for an owner, a property owner and I do all the paperwork."
Landlords have to follow the right procedures:
- To evict a tenant, they must give them a proper three day notice, have the correct information filled out and bring all necessary paperwork to court.
- They should also ask for a writ of possession after the eviction goes through.
"I feel a lot more confident with filing evictions now. I was kind of just like showing up to the clerk's office and being like here you go this is what I was given to give you, but now I can actually go with confidence and I can actually be like this is the right paperwork and I know it is so here you go," Tchourioukanova said.
If a tenant owes rent money, the landlord has to send them a notice of intent to hold on to a security deposit. Otherwise the tenant is owed that money back. The landlord can sue for it again along with the rent at a later date.
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