Thank you for your patience as I researched this.
A landlord must provide written itemization of damages they will be seeking after the termination of a tenancy within 30 days or the landlord is forever barred:
535.300. 1. A landlord may not demand or receive a security deposit in excess of two months' rent.
2. Within thirty days after the date of termination of the tenancy, the landlord shall:
(1) Return the full amount of the security deposit; or
(2) Furnish to the tenant a written itemized list of the damages for which the security deposit or any portion thereof is withheld, along with the balance of the security deposit. The landlord shall have complied with this subsection by mailing such statement and any payment to the last known address of the tenant.
3. The landlord may withhold from the security deposit only such amounts as are reasonably necessary for the following reasons:
(1) To remedy a tenant's default in the payment of rent due to the landlord, pursuant to the rental agreement;
(2) To restore the dwelling unit to its condition at the commencement of the tenancy, ordinary wear and tear excepted; or
(3) To compensate the landlord for actual damages sustained as a result of the tenant's failure to give adequate notice to terminate the tenancy pursuant to law or the rental agreement; provided that the landlord makes reasonable efforts to mitigate damages.
4. The landlord shall give the tenant or his representative reasonable notice in writing at his last known address or in person of the date and time when the landlord will inspect the dwelling unit following the termination of the rental agreement to determine the amount of the security deposit to be withheld, and the inspection shall be held at a reasonable time. The tenant shall have the right to be present at the inspection of the dwelling unit at the time and date scheduled by the landlord.
5. If the landlord wrongfully withholds all or any portion of the security deposit in violation of this section, the tenant shall recover as damages not more than twice the amount wrongfully withheld.
6. Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the right of the landlord to recover actual damages in excess of the security deposit, or to permit a tenant to apply or deduct any portion of the security deposit at any time in lieu of payment of rent.
7. As used in this section, the term "security deposit" means any deposit of money or property, however denominated, which is furnished by a tenant to a landlord to secure the performance of any part of the rental agreement, including damages to the dwelling unit. This term does not include any money or property denominated as a deposit for a pet on the premises.
Even if there was a basis on the contract, there is still a 5 year statute of limitations:
516.120. Within five years:
(1) All actions upon contracts, obligations or liabilities, express or implied, except those mentioned in section 516.110, and except upon judgments or decrees of a court of record, and except where a different time is herein limited;
(2) An action upon a liability created by a statute other than a penalty or forfeiture;
(3) An action for trespass on real estate;
(4) An action for taking, detaining or injuring any goods or chattels, including actions for the recovery of specific personal property, or for any other injury to the person or rights of another, not arising on contract and not herein otherwise enumerated;
(5) An action for relief on the ground of fraud, the cause of action in such case to be deemed not to have accrued until the discovery by the aggrieved party, at any time within ten years, of the facts constituting the fraud.
The statute of limitations needs to be plead as an affirmative defense, so when countering the suit, one would cite the statute of limitations as having expired. Failure to respond can result in the entry of a default judgment so it is very important to respond; if the court finds the lawsuit to be frivolous, they may, upon request, make an award of attorney fees and cosdts.
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Information provided is for educational purposes only. Consultation with a personal attorney is always recommended so your particular facts may be considered. Thank you and take care.