Lansing, MI asked in Landlord - Tenant for Virginia

Q: Did the recent updates to the VA Landlord and Tenant Act increase time limits for security deposit returns?

It has been 48 days since the end of my lease and I have not received my security deposit back, an itemized list of deductions, or any communication regarding withholding my deposit. My lease specifically stated that the deposit would be returned within 45 days. I reached out to my landlord to ask if the deposit had been postmarked. They confirmed they had not contacted me in these 48 days. However, my landlord is claiming that recent changes to the tenant laws specify that they have 45-60 days to return the deposit or make deductions and they are still processing the deposit. Are they within their rights?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Ross Cameron Hart
Ross Cameron Hart
  • Salem, VA
  • Licensed in Virginia

A: Security Deposits are governed by 55.1-1226 of the Code of Virginia - you can find it at this link:

It specifies 45 days from the date defined in the law (earlier timelines were a bit shorter) so it may be that the landlord is incorrect. I suggest you wait until at least 60 days have passed before taking action - the court will be more sympathetic then than if you run in and file something now. I know you want and need the deposit back, but some patience will have a greater chance of being beneficial to you.

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