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Unreturned Deposit on a Sublet

Posted by m on October 18, 2001 at 13:30:19:

My boyfriend and I subletted a brooklyn apartment for 3 months over the summer, paying all the rent up front as well as a substantial deposit. When we met with the man subletting to us, we agreed to pay the deposit to cover remaining bills after we moved out as well as "undue damage" to the place. We expected to see most of the money again.
When we moved in, the apartment was already in bad shape and had not been well maintained for many years.
We used the AC unit three times during that summer. The third time we went to use it, it was no longer working. The fan seemed to have broken down.
The tenant (who we subletted from) had originally bought/installed the unit, not the landlord. When he returned, he claimed we were responisble for its repair and witheld the total amount of our deposit. My question is:

Is the repair of heating/cooling appliances the responsibility of the landlord/sublandlord, if it was installed by that person? or is the tenant or subletter responsible? Are there any laws governing tenant/subletter relationship? if I bring him to court to get my deposit back, am I in the right?

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