More than 120 New York renters who did not have their security deposit returned at move-out as required by law will have the money withheld by landlords fully refunded.
The return of approximately $296,272 was achieved through a settlement New York Attorney General Letitia James reached with SGW Properties LLC. The tenants resided in various SGW buildings in Brooklyn, in the Crown Heights, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Midwood and Stuyvesant Heights neighborhoods, among others. In addition, the company will be required to train its personnel in compliance with the law to prevent future violations, will pay a $10,000 fine for damages to the State of New York, and will be subject to a $2,000 fine for each significant violation of this deposit law. security in the future.
In June 2019, New York enacted new legal protections for renters that require landlords to return the full security deposit or provide an itemized written list of their reasons for keeping it. If the landlord does not provide an itemized list within 14 days, he is no longer entitled to keep the deposit and must return the full amount.
The measures also stipulate that tenants who sue for their security deposit and are successful are entitled to compensation for actual damages. If the landlord’s actions were intentional, the tenant is entitled to double compensation.
In May of last year, the Attorney General’s Office launched an investigation into violations of the new security deposit law, after receiving complaints from New Yorkers that landlords were withholding their security deposits.
The investigation found that SGW failed to comply with 2019 changes to state rental laws to fail to return security deposits to 129 tenants within 14 days after the tenant vacated the apartment or provide an itemized written list of your reasons for keeping the deposit.
James argued that as the housing, health and affordability crises continue, it is more important than ever to put money back in the pockets of New Yorkers who need it.
“Tenants deserve transparency and accountability from their landlords, and New Yorkers should trust that their security deposit will be returned to them as required by their leases and the law,” the Attorney General stressed.
For Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso, landlords and real estate companies “take advantage of too many New Yorkers through our already unfair and convoluted housing laws. We are grateful to the Attorney General’s office for being vigilant and holding these individuals and companies accountable. Let this enforcement be a deterrent to others who wish to take advantage of innocent tenants.”
For his part, State Senator Zellnor Myrie appreciated the fact that the Attorney General’s Office pursues those who take advantage of vulnerable New Yorkers.
“Whether it’s a landlord improperly withholding security deposits or a company jacking up prices for consumers, the Attorney General is helping New Yorkers keep more of their hard-earned money in their pockets. win,” Myrie said.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.