PASCO COUNTY, Fla. -- A veteran, unable to get answers on where his $1,000 security deposit went after he moved out of an apartment, contacted 10Investigates for help. Now, with Christmas around the corner, it seems he'll get his long-awaited money back.

George Maldonado left his apartment in good order in November, and was told by his landlord that he would get his security deposit back promptly by his landlord. But the landlord was in a dispute with the management company, and each party told Maldonado the other was responsible for getting him his money.

When Maldonado reached out for help, 10Investigates asked to see documentation between all the parties and helped prompt Maldonado's landlord to agree to finally refund his deposit.

If you find yourself in a dispute with a landlord, it's important to know your rights and review your lease to see what you are entitled to.

If you are currently living in a rental where the landlord isn't complying with the lease, you can pay your rent to the county clerk instead in the form of a surety bond, which requires the landlord to remedy the problems before he or she can collect the money.

If you have a dispute with a former landlord, you may want to seek an affordable resolution in small claims court or seek legal help.

Free legal help is available in many counties – find yours here.