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Richard, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 55285
Experience:  32 years of experience as lawyer in Texas. I'm also a Real Estate developer.
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In Oklahoma can a land lord hold a deposit & 1/2 months rent

Customer Question

In Oklahoma can a land lord hold a deposit & 1/2 months rent on a house that I looked at and he insisted on that money before showing me a contract? Once I reviewed the contract I verbally advised him that I could not agree to the contract and respectful registers my money back. Is it legal for him to keep my money??
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Richard replied 2 years ago.
Hi! My name is ***** ***** I look forward to helping you!
He cannot. Before he is entitled to keep any of your money, there would have had to have been a full accord and satisfaction regarding your agreement to lease the house. A full accord and satisfaction requires that you agree to the terms and conditions of the lease. There is no way you could have done that without even having been presented a contract to review. So, if the landlord won't return all your money, file suit against him. If the claim is $6,000 or less, you can do this without an attorney. And, let him know if forced to sue you will be seeking not only your money returned but punitive damages for withholding it in bad faith. Filing the suit will give you the collection options and leverage you need to collect the debt owed you. That's because once the suit is filed and a judgment awarded, you become a judgment creditor, and if he doesn’t then pay the judgment, you can have the sheriff serve a summons on him for a debtor examination. That forces him to meet you in court again and answer questions under oath about his assets. After that information is obtained, you have the power to garnish wages, attach bank accounts, have the sheriff seize other personal property, and/or place liens on any non-homestead property he owns to satisfy the judgment. In my experience, simply filing the suit is typically all you need to do to resolve this outside of court because most of the time, once served with a summons he is being sued, he will pay you rather than risk the judgment and punitive damages on a suit he has no chance of winning.
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