After a tenant moves out, a landlord has 14 days in which to either return deposits or give the tenant a written statement explaining why all or part of the money is being kept. A tenant should leave a forwarding address with the landlord when moving out.
Under the law, the rental unit must be restored to the same condition as when the tenant moved in, except for normal wear and tear. Deposits cannot be used to cover normal "wear and tear," or damage that existed when the tenant moved in. The law requires that a checklist listing the unit's condition be filled out when the tenant moved in.
The landlord must mail the required deposit payment, statement, or both with first class postage, paid within 14 days. If the tenant takes the landlord to court, and it is ruled that the landlord intentionally did not provide the statement or return the money, the court can award the tenant up to twice the amount of the deposit.