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I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear about your situation.
What state are you in? How much notice did you give the landlord that you were moving out? Did you have a lease for a set term, or was it month to month?
Thank you. When did you give the notice, though?
I just wanted to see if the landlord had a right to that money in the first place - in some states, he wouldn't.
When the landlord told you that you had to pay for the entire month, you could have chosen to stay for the whole month. If you have already turned over the keys and removed all your belongings, then the apartment is considered to have been returned to the landlord, and there's no further right to go back in.
With that said, the landlord is required to send you a written, itemized list of damages within 30 days after you moved out. They cannot keep anything without sending you that notice. If you don't get it, you can sue for a refund.
Do you have any other questions about this?