Halifax tenant fights to have security deposit returned to him by Nova Scotia landlord – Halifax

A Halifax tenant says he and his former roommates have been waiting more than a year for their nearly $1,600 security deposit to be returned to them by Nova Scotian landlord Marcus Ranjbar.

“Unfortunately, this system allows landlord Marcus Ranjbar to continue to abuse more tenants,” said Ahmad Al Mallah, who rented a Halifax apartment from Ranjbar last year.

Marcus Ranjbar did not respond to an interview request from Global News.

Al Mallah and his housemates paid a $1,593.75 security deposit to rent this apartment in Halifax between May and August 2021.

Alexa MacLean / Global Halifax

Al Mallah and his housemates paid a $1593.75 security deposit to rent a Preston Street apartment in Ranjbar between May 15, 2021 and August 31, 2021.

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Al Mallah has since obtained two orders to have his deposit returned, one through a residential rent agent and the other through Nova Scotia Small Claims Court.

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Including costs and interest, the enforcement order issued in January by small claims court orders Ranjbar to pay Al Mallah and his roommates $1,741.90.

However, Al Mallah says the order could not be enforced as Ranjbar’s bank details are unknown.

“I would expect the government to put forward more ease in terms of enforcement. And it must be very strict and direct so that no one abuses anyone. For example, it is not the landlord who abuses the tenant, it is not the tenant who abuses the landlord,” he said.

An emailed statement sent by Amanda Pelham, a provincial communications adviser, said: “If the sheriff’s office does not have detailed information, it may not be possible to enforce the collection order. Applicants can contact a lawyer to discuss their options.

Nova Scotia’s Residential Tenancies Act Minister said his department is actively considering creating an enforcement and compliance division to deal with outstanding issues like this.

“We don’t have law enforcement officers to investigate and then issue fines and that’s part of our review,” Colton LeBlanc said.

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Mark Culligan, a community legal worker with the Dalhousie Legal Aid Service, says the province needs to move quickly to expand current protections for tenants.

“Nova Scotia needs new rules that can fine bad landlords and hold them accountable when they’re caught ignoring court orders, repeatedly breaking the same rules, or retaliating against tenants. for attempting to enforce their legal rights,” Culligan wrote in a statement.

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In the meantime, Al Mallah says he is determined to find a way to enforce the orders.

“As long as I stand up for what I believe is fair and just to the people, I think I will continue on this path until the end. I will keep talking,” he said.

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