Is the tenant entitled to receive this interest on a security deposit in New jersey?

Full Question:

I am residing in New Jersey as a tenant. I received a written notice from my landlord that the security deposit paid by me was deposited in a savings bank account and is earning an interest of 7 percent per annum. Am I entitled to receive this interest?
12/29/2016   |   Category: Landlord Tenant   |   State: New Jersey   |   #29121

Answer:

Per the tenancy law of New Jersey, all of the interest earned by the security deposit given by the tenant and deposited in a savings bank account belongs to the tenant. The law requires that the interest earned on the deposit must be paid to the tenant in cash every year or subtracted from the rent owed by the tenant. This must be done on the renewal or the anniversary of the lease. This right of the tenant is enumerated in N.J. Stat. § 46:8-19(c) which reads as follows:

“c. The person investing the security deposit pursuant to subsection a. or b. of this section shall notify in writing each of the persons making such security deposit or advance, giving the name and address of the investment company, State or federally chartered bank, savings bank or savings and loan association in which the deposit or investment of security money is made, the type of account in which the security deposit is deposited or invested, the current rate of interest for that account, and the amount of such deposit or investment, in accordance with the following:

         (1) within 30 days of the receipt of the security deposit from the tenant;

         (2) within 30 days of moving the deposit from one depository institution or fund to another, except in the case of a merger of institutions or funds, then within 30 days of the date the person investing the security deposit receives notice of that merger, or from one account to another account, if the change in the account or institution occurs more than 60 days prior to the annual interest payment;

         (3) within 30 days after the effective date of P.L. 2003, c. 188 (C. 46:8-21.4);

         (4) at the time of each annual interest payment; and

         (5) within 30 days after the transfer or conveyance of ownership or control of the property pursuant to section 2 of P.L. 1967, c. 265 (C. 46:8-20).

All of the money so deposited or advanced may be deposited or invested by the person receiving the same in one interest-bearing or dividend yielding account as long as he complies with all the other requirements of this act.

The interest or earnings paid thereon by the investment company, State or federally chartered bank, savings bank or savings and loan association, shall belong to the person making the deposit or advance and shall be paid to the tenant in cash, or be credited toward the payment of rent due on the renewal or anniversary of said tenant's lease or on January 31, if the tenant has been given written notice after the effective date of P.L. 2003, c. 188 and before the next anniversary of the tenant's lease, that subsequent interest payments will be made on January 31 of each year.”