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A college student who returned a lease and had his 5,000 deposit deducted sued the landlord and was awarded 7,000.

28/03/2024

After the two university students surrendered the lease, the landlord was reluctant to return the deposit because many things needed to be repaired, and later deducted RM5,000 from it. The two then sought the assistance of a lawyer, and not only got back the deposit due but also received compensation.

Lawyer Tuan Zubin shared that the two college students came to him a few months ago, claiming that they had not damaged anything in the house during their tenancy.

In a post on his Instagram legal advice page, Lawyerboy, Mr. Chum pointed out that the landlord first demanded compensation for damage to the dining room table and chairs, and the two were willing to take responsibility for the damage and agreed to pay compensation even though they hadn’t damaged any of the items.

He said that after the two men moved out and asked the owner for the deposit back, the owner said that many things need to be repaired and cleaned up, and the cost would be deducted from the deposit, the result of RM6,000 deposit a deduction of only RM1,000, and then ignored the two men’s explanations, intended to be left unsettled.

Tan Zubin said he told the two men when they came to the door to ask for help that this is the operation of many unscrupulous homeowners, because most people will not take the matter to court for a few thousand ringgit, after all, the lawyer’s fee is certainly higher than the cost of the claim.

He said that in order to punish such unscrupulous homeowners, he agreed to fight for the two university students on a pro bono basis, initially sending a letter from his lawyer to the homeowner, and then taking the case to court when the other party refused to compromise.

He pointed out that during the exchange of court documents, the lawyer representing the owner had contacted him several times to persuade him to settle the case out of court, with compensation ranging from RM3,000 to RM6,000, but he refused to do so.

He told the other lawyer that since the case had gone to court, he would not agree to an out-of-court settlement without RM7,000 in compensation; the other lawyer initially said that if no consensus could be reached, he would file a lawsuit, but then contacted him three days later to say that the homeowner was willing to pay RM7,000 in compensation.

“I confirmed with the clients (two university students) that they were willing to accept the RM7,000 compensation and settle out of court.”

He explained that the opposing counsel offered to settle the case simply because the homeowner did not want to spend more money on the case, and the cost of going to court to fight the case definitely exceeded the amount of money the homeowner needed to pay.

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