RFP: Video Production for Legal Services Vermont TIG Classrooms Project 2020-2021

Request for Proposal

Video Production for Legal Services Vermont TIG “Classrooms” Project 2020-2021
RFP release date: May 5, 2020
Due date for proposals: June 5, 2020 at 5 p.m. Eastern time
Contact Kris Surette with questions: ksurette<at>lawlinevt.org
The objective of this Request for Proposal (RFP) is to engage a qualified Vendor to develop a total of 13 short videos to explain the law in five different legal areas and demonstrate the legal process. The videos will demonstrate how Vermonters can handle a legal problem on their own. The videos will be an integral part of five online self-help “Classrooms” being developed by Legal Services Vermont.
We’ll create multiple videos for each of the five topics, and three of the videos created will be shared among the legal areas. The videos will each be at least 2 minutes long, but no longer than 4 minutes long.
Through this RFP process, Legal Services Vermont is soliciting written proposals that identify creative ideas, capabilities, capacity, deliverables, and pricing for this video project. Companies with expertise in any kind of instructional, educational or outreach videos may submit a proposal. 
Plese see this PDF for details. This PDF file does not fully comply with all applicable guidelines for accessible digital documents. For another format, contact us at ksurette<at>lawlinevt.org.

Download the RFP and review the addendum below

RFP for Video Production for Legal Services Vermont TIG “Classrooms” Project 2020-2021 


Added 5/26/2020: Additional information that may help you with your proposal. 

Sample Text

Examples of text/information for our online classrooms. Some of this information would be included in the videos we are making.

Getting Your Security Deposit Back in Vermont 


  • A security deposit is money you paid your landlord to cover certain costs. In Vermont, the landlord can only keep it for unpaid rent, unpaid utility bills, damage to the home beyond normal wear and tear, or removing items you left behind. Otherwise the whole security deposit must be paid back to you after you move out. 

  • "Beyond normal wear and tear" means that you caused the damage, or allowed it to happen, while the home was in your control. It also means damage other than what naturally happens to a home because of age. For example, sometimes old carpets have to be replaced and rooms have to be repainted whether or not there is damage. 

  • You are entitled to get all of your security deposit back after you move, unless you owe the landlord money for one of these reasons. 

  • If the landlord wants to keep some or all of your security deposit, they need to explain their decision in writing. 

  • This classroom will teach you how to make sure you get your whole security deposit back in Vermont, and what to do if your landlord disagrees. 


Step 1. Be prepared. 

  • If you can, take pictures and notes when you first move into your home, to have a record of conditions in the home. Remember, your landlord can only keep your security deposit for damage you caused or allowed to happen while you were living there. You can ask your landlord to do an inspection with you when you move in. 

  • If you can, have a record of how and when you pay rent while you are living in your home. If you pay by check or direct deposit, know how to get bank statements. If you pay by money order, keep the money order receipts. If you pay cash, ask your landlord to give you a receipt each time. 

  • If there is any problem with conditions about the home, let your landlord know in writing. Otherwise your landlord may claim they never knew about the problem, and blame you. 


Step 2. Clean up and move out. 

  • When you are ready to move out, make sure to remove all of your belongings and trash from the home. You do not need to pay a professional cleaner, but the home should be "broom clean." 

  • Ask your landlord to inspect your home with you. This way you will know in advance about any possible problems the landlord may want to bring up when you ask for your deposit back. 

  • Whether or not your landlord will join you, walk through the home and take pictures and notes. You can have someone else join you as a witness. 

  • Let your landlord know in writing when you move out. You should tell them your new address where they can send the security deposit. 


Step 3. Deal with the response from the landlord. 

  • Under Vermont law, the landlord has 14 days from when they found out you were moving out to deal with the security deposit. 

  • They have three choices: 

  1. return the entire deposit, 

  1. return part of the deposit, or 

  1. return none of the deposit. 

  • If the landlord keeps any part of your security deposit, they must also give you a written, itemized explanation of what costs they are keeping from the security deposit. 

  • If you got your whole deposit back, you're done–congratulations! If the landlord disagrees with you and kept part or all of your security deposit, read on. 


Step 4. Write and file your complaint. 

  • If your old home was in Burlington, you can file a complaint with the Housing Review Board. Anywhere else in Vermont, you should file a complaint with the Small Claims Court in the county where you lived. 

  • The Housing Review Board complaint can be found on the City of Burlington website. 

  • The Small Claims complaint form can be found at the Vermont Judiciary. 

  • Either way, use the form to write down why you disagree with the money the landlord kept from the security deposit. This can be a very simple statement, such as "I didn't owe back rent and I didn't cause damage to my apartment," or, "my landlord didn't give me a reason why they are keeping my security deposit." 

  • If you are filing a Burlington Housing Review Board complaint, you must fill out the complaint form and return it to the City of Burlington within 30 days of getting a letter from your landlord about the security deposit, or within 44 days of when you moved out if your landlord did not give you a written explanation of why they kept your deposit. 

  • In small claims court, you have 6 years to start a small claims case about your security deposit, but in most cases it doesn't make sense to wait that long. Your evidence is stronger when it is still fresh. 

  • You can ask for double the amount of the deposit if your landlord never gave you your security deposit or a written explanation within 14 days of moving out. 

  • Mail one copy of the small claims complaint to the court and one copy to your landlord. 

  • There is a filing fee for small claims court. You can either pay the fee after you mail the complaint, or fill out a fee waiver form. The fee waiver form gives the court information about your income and expenses. The court will decide whether or not you should have to pay the filing fee. 

  • In the Housing Review Board, the next step is to get a letter about your hearing. In small claims court, you are waiting for your landlord to answer your complaint in writing. 


Step 5. Prepare for a hearing. 

  • In small claims, your landlord has 30 days to answer by mail. If they don't respond, you can ask the court to have them served by sheriff. 

  • If the landlord still doesn't respond 21 days after being served by sheriff, you can ask the small claims court for a "default judgment," meaning that you win without a hearing. 

  • Otherwise, if the landlord does give you a written answer and they disagree with you, you will have a hearing. 

  • The landlord's answer may include counterclaims against you, if they think you owe them more money. 

  • You should prepare for your hearing by thinking about what exhibits (items such as pictures and receipts) and testimony (statements from you and other witnesses) you will use in the hearing. 

  • Good evidence is based on a person's own knowledge about a specific event. For example, it's good evidence for your friend to say that they were there when you did a moveout inspection and they didn't see a stain on the carpet. It's not good evidence for your friend to say that you are always careful and clean and would never leave a stain behind. 

  • For any exhibits you want to use, make enough copies for yourself, the landlord, and the judge. 


Step 6. Collecting the judgment. 

  • After the hearing, the judge will make a decision. If the judge decides that your landlord owes you money for the deposit, they have 30 days to pay. 

  • If they do not pay within 30 days, you can ask the court to garnish their wages or bank accounts or put a lien on property they own. 

  • Our Small Claims classroom has more details on collecting a judgment.