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Fla. Stat. 83.49 states:

Whenever money is deposited or advanced by a tenant on a rental agreement as security for performance of the rental agreement or as advance rent for other than the next immediate rental period, the landlord or the landlord’s agent shall the total amount in an account at a Florida banking institution for the benefit of tenant

The closest thing to "a separate account at a banking institution " in the mortgage industry is called an escrow account. It is held by a neutral third party, which presumes that it is tied by contract to the other two. Now, I've never seen such a contract with leases even when they state "security deposit will be held in a separate account". So here's my question: what should one ask from a landlord to verify this clause is in effect?

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  • Just ask what banking institution the separate account is held at. With bank failures all over the news, hard to argue against telling the renter that.
    – Ben Voigt
    May 12, 2023 at 18:27
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    "Just ask what banking institution the separate account is held at" They can say it's held at bank XYZ, but in fact it is co-mingled.
    – Erwann
    May 12, 2023 at 18:37

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The statute is not talking about an escrow account

It’s talking about a trust account - where one party (the landlord/agent) legally owns the account, but it’s held for the benefit of another (the tenant).

Note that the agent will not have seperate accounts for each tenant, but a single trust account where all the tenants deposits are comingled and keeping it all straight is an accounting problem for the agent, but one that agents and lawyers have been doing for centuries.

You could ask to see the bank deposit slips.

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  • "The statute is not talking about an escrow account" I didn't say it did, but your clarification remains useful regardless.
    – Erwann
    May 12, 2023 at 23:46

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