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CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10244
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing HOAs, homeowners, businesses and others in real estate matters.
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I as evicted after living in a rental ,one side of a duplex

Customer Question

I as evicted after living in a rental ,one side of a duplex for 8 years . I gave the landlord a check for the rent and they returned it to me and served me with a eviction notice a court order . I was locked out in 45 days not 60 that the local law allows for tenants that have resided in the same unit for more than three years . The rental agreement shows that i posted a $1000 security deposit . the landlord kept my security deposit even though the court order said nothing about the landlord being allowed to keep it . So i didnt have enough time to find a new place and lost a lot of my belongings and ended up homeless because of the short time to leave and because of the shortage of funds from the landlord keeping my deposit . I left the place clean and all my belongings were out of the unit some of which was left in the front yard a couple truck loads some were valuable items but no place to move them too and no money and not enough time to do so . can I sue the landlord for my loss of belongings , lack of time to more and loss of my deposit ?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.

Dear Customer,

I am sorry to learn of this situation.

When you say that you were "evicted" - it appears that you were actually evicted (the landlord went to court, filed an unlawful detainer, and got a judgment of possession against you).

If this was the case, the time to dispute notice (60 days as required for lease termination - assuming you had paid rent and there was no "for cause" basis for your termination), was during the court case, there is no 60 day period after the court enters the judgment. However, the landlord cannot do a "lock out" they must have the sheriff do the forcible eviction.

Once the Sheriff does a forcible eviction however, the tenant's belongings that remain are moved to the curb and the landlord has no liability for them.

Whether or not you have any right to a return of your security deposit really depends on what claims the landlord has made against them - it is extremely unusual for a landlord to actually go through the eviction process (to judgment) and not have outstanding expenses (well in excess of $1,000.00) that can be charged against the security deposit. However, they should have sent you an itemized deduction (although be careful, this will likely be accompanied by a bill for the remainder).

If I misunderstood your situation and you didn't actually get evicted by court order, please let me know and I can try to follow up a little more accurately with your circumstances, but if my understanding is correct (the landlord had to go to court and get a judgment against you to evict you), then it is unlikely you can claim anything against them (not impossible, just unlikely, there are always some exceptions based on unusual or extraordinary fact patterns).