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smr
29-01-2009, 14:12 PM
Hi all,

Long story but we have been excellent tenants and the landlord has turned out to be a complete ****.

Anyway, we have finally had enough and I taking him to court because he has failed to protect our deposit.

I rang up the three schemes this morning and none of them have heard anything about this address. Also asked the ll on a number of occassions where our deposit is being held and each time he has brushed it off and started talking about something else.

Since moving in in July 2007 we have heard NOTHING and seen NO documentation or anything at all to do with the TDPS. In fact only a few months back did I find out that the TDPS even existed!

I have decided to take him to court and have read that the landlord must tell the tenant within 14 days of moving in the details about how the deposit is protected... yet I've also just read (on these forums) about someone saying that if the case goes to court and as long as the landlord puts the deposit under a scheme before the court date then he is protected and not liable in paying us 3 x the amount of the deposit...

Can someone clear this up please?

LandlordLee
29-01-2009, 15:10 PM
Yep, with the DPS. If the landlord even deposits in in this scheme on the day of the court hearing then he has fulfilled his duties. This is because the scheme has accepted it outside of the 14 day period. Its the legislation wording which the judge looks at.

Anyways i would write to the landlord telling him you wish to take him to court. This alone should be enough to make him protect it. Send it recorded so you have proof he has received it as it can be used in court.

smr
29-01-2009, 15:21 PM
Yep, with the DPS. If the landlord even deposits in in this scheme on the day of the court hearing then he has fulfilled his duties. This is because the scheme has accepted it outside of the 14 day period. Its the legislation wording which the judge looks at.

Anyways i would write to the landlord telling him you wish to take him to court. This alone should be enough to make him protect it. Send it recorded so you have proof he has received it as it can be used in court.

thats a bit of a loophole then isnt it ? Why is it that it states on the government website (direct.gov.uk) that the 14 day rule applies to the TDPS yet it doesn't state that "but it doesn't apply to the DPS"???

Thats a bit daft.

Thanks for letting me know anyyway

Shelly24
29-01-2009, 15:34 PM
just be careful because i suspect my old landlord did not protect my deposit. same as you did not have any paperwork/documents, no mention of it atall and when i moved out i didnt not hear anything about getting it back. Its all going to court now but ive since found out she is a member of the TDS so even though i recieved no verbal or written confirmation that its protected i might found out that it was all along.
You need to weigh up if its work it or not or whether you are just doing it to get one up on a horrible landlord.

smr
29-01-2009, 15:40 PM
just be careful because i suspect my old landlord did not protect my deposit. same as you did not have any paperwork/documents, no mention of it atall and when i moved out i didnt not hear anything about getting it back. Its all going to court now but ive since found out she is a member of the TDS so even though i recieved no verbal or written confirmation that its protected i might found out that it was all along.
You need to weigh up if its work it or not or whether you are just doing it to get one up on a horrible landlord.

i've asked my landlord on 3 seperate occassions where its being held but each time he's never told me, and i've always asked him nicely as well, no pressure or anything like that.

Wouldn't it be simple enough to go "oh yeah its with this scheme etc."

Being that he hasn't it really makes me think that he has not protected the scheme. But I was more interested in this 14 day ruling than anything.

The law is a complete and utter joke to behold -

It states in one part that the Tenant can take the Landlord to court because he has not protected the deposit.

Yet in reality the landlord can NOW protect the deposit on the day of the court hearing and not be forced to pay 3x the amount!!!!

Good old English Law makng perfect sense again then!!! hahaha.

Mrs Jones
29-01-2009, 16:01 PM
That's ok - most of us landlords think the law relating to property letting is c**p too, but not, of course, for the same reasons that you do!!

smr
29-01-2009, 17:57 PM
if the landlord can still protect the deposit on the same day as the court hearing then why the hell didn't these landlords ... (extracted from the wikipedia)..


"June 2008: In a case which came before the Court in Cardiff where the letting agent failed to protect the deposit, the landlord had to pay the tenants compensation equal to 3x the deposit of £900 (total: £2,700 + costs) and also refund the original deposit in full. In Gloucester in March, a landlord was required to take the same action even though there were rent arrears."

Also, if what you are saying is correct (that the landlord has until the court hearing day to deposit the money) then why don't all landlords do this and think "**** the tenancy deposit scheme and the 14 day ruling - if I get taken court I'll just pay it then"...

Am I right or am I right haha:D

jta
29-01-2009, 18:56 PM
"June 2008: In a case which came before the Court in Cardiff where the letting agent failed to protect the deposit, the landlord had to pay the tenants compensation equal to 3x the deposit of £900 (total: £2,700 + costs) and also refund the original deposit in full. In Gloucester in March, a landlord was required to take the same action even though there were rent arrears."

D

S'obvious innit, it was a crap LA who didn't keep up with the law, and the LL probably wasn't much better.

The fact is though, that where a LL protects the deposit late most courts are accepting that it is protected and therefore not applying the sanction. Right or wrong, that is the way it is.

mind the gap
29-01-2009, 19:17 PM
Very true. As the schme evolves, if it becomes apparent that significant numbers of LLs are doing this, they may well turn the heat up a little.

The fundamental problem is that the leglislation itself (especially the sections dealing with how the penalties are to be imposed) is a pig's ear of a piece of drafting and it defies clear interpretation. Hence the confusion and the fact that different judges have ruled differently in apparently identical circumstances.

Wish they'd sent me this sort of stuff to proof-read!

house275
29-01-2009, 19:44 PM
Hi this is UNTRUE

Our daughter was renting LL wanted to put rent up whilst discussing with "Shelter" about fairness of this they asked her about her deposit & was it protected
She wrote to LA giving 14 days to provide details (she had been his tenant for 6 months at this point)
He failed to do so
Their contract ended they moved out
He didn't return deposit

Started small claims for deposit
Was advised to claim for compensation at 3 times deposit + deposit + interest (you need to stipulate this right from start on forms) + loss of wages
Total just over £5000

His excuse was he had protected it (he had and within 14 days of tenancy starting )
He didnt get the recorded delivery letter ! (hmmm)
He simply forgot to tell her about it (no actually never told her even after her written request)

He was found guilty CCJ awarded against him
He appealed Judge threw it out

We now have a solicitor serving a 3rd party debt order freezing his business bank account as LA has done nothing about paying

You can sue either the LL or the LA

Happy to provide details if it helps anyone


JUSTICE

jta
29-01-2009, 20:01 PM
His excuse was he had protected it (he had and within 14 days of tenancy starting )

He simply forgot to tell her about it (no actually never told her even after her written request)

He was found guilty CCJ awarded against him


So presumably he was found liable because he had not given your daughter the info required within 14 days.
Why has your daughter not got the deposit back?

smr
29-01-2009, 20:36 PM
We are set on taking the landlord to court but we are still renting in his property. Would it be better to follow this court action once we have moved to a new address?

we aren't getting on with him and we want to move but at the moment we are in the process of saving up for a new deposit on a new place and also the first month's rent + 150 quid credit check fees.

house275
29-01-2009, 20:46 PM
So presumably he was found liable because he had not given your daughter the info required within 14 days.
Why has your daughter not got the deposit back?



Hi

Yes that is correct he breached the legislation by failing to provide the details
She has now received a chq for the deposit from him (arrived the day before 1st court date)
She didn't know where to start looking for the deposit or if he had protected it
We know now that she could have approached the deposit schemes
The first time we saw her deposit cert was when he gave it to the judge at court


However this process cost her a whole array of fees coming to over £500 in total (these were added to her costs)

smr
29-01-2009, 20:55 PM
Hi

Yes that is correct he breached the legislation by failing to provide the details
She has now received a chq for the deposit from him (arrived the day before 1st court date)
She didn't know where to start looking for the deposit or if he had protected it
We know now that she could have approached the deposit schemes
The first time we saw her deposit cert was when he gave it to the judge at court


However this process cost her a whole array of fees coming to over £500 in total (these were added to her costs)

you are eligible for free legal advice so she shouldnt have accrued those £500 fees if she was on a low income though?

edit - my bad, i see she didn't because she didn't go through the schemes. We are getting free legal advice and wont have to pay anything when we take our landlord to court.

newbie2008
29-01-2009, 21:07 PM
Hi Guys

We have a similar problem, our tenants turned out to be horrific, they turned cream carpets black, had a dog when we didnt permit animals, left the house filthy, damaged furniture and wrecked some personal possessions we had left behind. We were paying a management company to look after the property for us and have just found out the company never registered the deposit on the scheme. We are witholding the deposit but arent sure what to do in terms of un unregistered deposit. The tenant has already turned nasty and this could come back to haunt us?

Thanks

mind the gap
29-01-2009, 21:17 PM
Hi Guys

We have a similar problem, our tenants turned out to be horrific, they turned cream carpets black, had a dog when we didnt permit animals, left the house filthy, damaged furniture and wrecked some personal possessions we had left behind. We were paying a management company to look after the property for us and have just found out the company never registered the deposit on the scheme. We are witholding the deposit but arent sure what to do in terms of un unregistered deposit. The tenant has already turned nasty and this could come back to haunt us?

Thanks

My advice to you would be to return their deposit in full immediately, otherwise you risk having them sue you for the deposit plus 3x its value.

If your agent has been negligent you will have to sue them for breach or contract.

It is always advisable for LL either to protect the deposit personally, or to insist agent sends them the details of the scheme used, LL reg. no, etc. for this very reason. Likewise the gas safety certificate - there is too mcuh at stake to leave it to a management company. some are good; some are not. It's not a risk I would take.

newbie2008
29-01-2009, 21:30 PM
how much would it cost our tenants to take us to court? its little things the management co have done like agreed the tenants could stay in the property an extra week and just "take out of deposit" without asking us... The house was disgusting when they left, my husband cried. We just dont see why we should give them £ back when they trashed the place. surely our management co should be liable? how successful would taking him for breach of conduct be?

Cathroc
29-01-2009, 22:09 PM
The cost to them ? Probably nothing because they'll have a way of getting round it. The cost to you ? Potentially 3 times the deposit, plus the deposit, plus interest to boot. Sounds like your Mgt Co were negligent and you need to take the matter with them. How successful / or amt it'd cost to take Mgt co to court, I'm not sure. I've been letting nearly 14 years and not had anything like this to deal with.

mind the gap
29-01-2009, 22:13 PM
how much would it cost our tenants to take us to court? its little things the management co have done like agreed the tenants could stay in the property an extra week and just "take out of deposit" without asking us... The house was disgusting when they left, my husband cried. We just dont see why we should give them £ back when they trashed the place. surely our management co should be liable? how successful would taking him for breach of conduct be?

If your tenants were successful (which I think they would be), it wouldn't cost them anything, since you would be liable not only for the deposit and the 3x penalty, but also for their costs. I'm sorry, you have my sympathies but if your tenants get wind of their rights in this matter, they could inflict serious financial harm, couldn't they? Return their depsosit and chalk it up to experience.

I don't know what your chances are of suing your agent and winning, although I know it has been done. Perhaps post your own thread asking for advice on that - I've never done it (I don't use agents/management companies).

If you do decide to sue, you should consult a solicitor who specialises in Landlord and Tenant law.

house275
30-01-2009, 07:27 AM
Hi

Daughters fees were all court fees she didn't have representation
So if your tenants dont qualify for free advice this may put them off ?
It is a long drawn out process
And not for the faint hearted

newbie2008
30-01-2009, 10:06 AM
thanks everyone for all your advice, think we will have to give them deposit back, but lesson learned!

Paul Gibbs
30-01-2009, 14:33 PM
liability to pay costs depends on the track the claim is allocated to: -

small claims track - disputes that are not complicated and worth less than £5,000 (or £1,000 if personal injury). Each party will have to pay their own legal costs (but if defendant loses he will have to pay claimants court fees and a fixed amount if claimant uses solicitors (around £100)).

fast track - claims between 5k and 15k winner gets legal costs paid by loser.

there is also the multi track for higher value cases or more complex cases - the costs consequences are the same as fast track.

the above is a generalisation as in limited circumstances the rules can be changed (if a party acts unreasonably) (or if winner failed to beat an offer made by the loser).

Some claimants may be entitled to Legal Help or Legal Aid but if it is a small claims matter I do not think you would be entitled to that funding

smr
24-06-2009, 18:13 PM
Hi all,

Ok so bear with me on this because it's going to be quite long winded...

We (myself, partner and two kids) moved into a 3 bed detached property on July 1st 2007.

Everything was hunky dory until this last winter just gone (2008) as it was a particularly harsh and cold winter.

Well on the side of the house there is a garage converted into a study which I use as a computer office, only it has no fixed heating - I've got two electric heaters I forked out for - and has no roof insulation either.

The coldness of the room got so unbearable that I asked him if he would fit a radiator in there... after all we're paying him £650 a month to live here.

He said he couldn't afford it and blamed this on the current economic climate (didn't stop him enjoying a nice two week break to Dubai in the summer of 2008 though eh :p)...

Well I asked and asked and asked and got no where... but more importantly, it wasn't just this room that was cold - and by cold my knees were literally aching, but it was the rest of the house..

During the winter months even with the thermostat on full it just simply takes the chill out of the room, you still cannot sit in there with a t shirt on with the heating right up.

The windows are in a bad shape and single glazed.

When we first came to view the property we asked if he would get double glazing installed and he told us he definitley would - by the end of the year.

Of course, I didn't realise this at the time but I was being naive and should have had that in writing - oh well, next time!

There's also a crack running along the ceiling in the kitchen (directly under the bath) which we told him about when it started out as a very small crack and he has never come around to see it... the best thing about this is that he lives next door! Hardly the otherside of the city?!

There is also damp mould growing on the master bedroom ceiling and he has never come around to see this for himself neither.

Anyway, we had enough of asking, and felt that we were being fobbed off and paying £650 a month to live in an ice box - by Leicester's standards 650 rent on a 3 bed detached is a lot of money...

So I rang Environmental Health, a lady came around to inspect the property and concluded that we must have some form of fixed heating in the study capable of achieving a temperature of at least 21 degrees celcius and that roof insulation must be fitted too.

This was a few months ago. Last week she rang me up telling me that this Monday just gone the works would be carried out because she had asked and asked the landlord but he refuses to do the work himself saying he cannot afford to.

Well on Saturday we had been out shopping and when we came back there was some post from the EHO. I opened it and found it was a letter from the same lady saying that our landlord's solicitor had got in touch with her and told her that we are being taken to court under section 21 (eviction) and she also enclosed a photocopy of the eviction notice... served on 29th December 2008... yet I have never seen an eviction notice in my life!!

He is also taking us to court for non payment of rent, we're in arrears for about £400 which we are paying off on Friday as my partner ( who is on speaking terms with them ) said to him today and he accepted that.

Well the plot thickens... on numerous occasions I have asked him where our Tenancy Deposit is being held and he has never let us know where or how or anything to do with it...

I read that one of the greatest penalties of not protecting a tenant's deposit is relinquishing the automatic right to regain posession of the property under section 21 of the Housing Act 2004.

Interesting huh?

Now, he is getting very petty imho... because we felt we had no choice but to get Environmental Health involved he has now hit back by trying to make shed us in a bad light by making it look as though we have ignored an eviction notice which we've never seen. Now he is also trying to get us under section 8 non payment of rent when all he could have done is asked.

Should I wait until after we are out of the property or take him to court now for not supplying us with details of where or how our deposit is being protected?

thevaliant
24-06-2009, 20:37 PM
I'm no solicitor, but:

1. The Section 21 notice (if one was served at all) is invalid as deposit is not protected. Politely explain this to him.
2. The Section 8 notice is only mandatory if two full months rent is owing (£1,300) which is isn't.

jeffrey
25-06-2009, 10:20 AM
On what grounds did L serve the s.8 Notice? Did it state grounds 8, 10, and 11?

smr
12-10-2009, 18:40 PM
Hi all,

Gonna be a long story this one I'm afraid so please bear with.

Myself, my partner and her two kids have been living in a privately rented house since July 1st 2007.

We paid £650 deposit + £650 first month's rent and credit check fees of £150.

The landlord was listing his house on gumtree and so it wasn't through a letting agency or such like.

When we viewed the property for the first time we asked if he would get double glazing installed and he said "yes definitely - by the end of the year"...

Well fast forward to the time of writing (October, 2009) and we've still got the single glazed windows that were here in 2007.

Anyway, we learned a lesson of many lessons we were about to learn during our stay as tenants here. This lesson being (1). Always get things in writing!

Anyway, we lived here, quite happily to start with, had our first Christmas in the house and then lived throughout 2008 quite happily as well.

During the winter of 2008 is when problems began to arise. This was, as I'm sure most of you will remember, a particularly harsh winter. Well, given the fact that this house has single glazed, rotting windows, we knew only too well about the bitterly cold weather which ensued throughout that season.

The house is a 3 bedroom detached, which used to have a garage on the side of it but has been converted into the study.

Now, this study has no fixed heating (no radiators), no roof insulation and no double glazing, as aforementioned.

You shouldn't be surprised to hear then, that I used to come downstairs in the morning, into the study and be able to see my breath as if I was standing outside. This is no exaggeration - it really was that cold.

Many a time I had to sit at my computer wrapped up in a big padded coat with my hat and scarf on in a desperate attempt to stave off the sheer coldness in the room.

I bought an electric heater and it had hardly any impact whatsoever, at best, after a couple of hours of being on it just managed to take the chill out of the room, but it was still very cold.

So I went around to the landlord and asked him very politely if he wouldn't mind fixing a radiator in there. His response was "That room was never meant to be used as a study, it was meant to be a playroom in the summer time."

Imagine how mad this made me feel. What's all the more striking about this statement of his is the fact that in the advert for the house it said under key features : STUDY.

What's even more mind blowing is the fact that when we viewed the house he said to both myself and my partner "You can use this room as a STUDY or even a fourth BEDROOM.

The Internet phrase 'lol' springs to mind.

So I went home and continued to freeze my ass off in this sordid little house.

Other problems then started to surface. A leak occurred under the bath tub which British Gas came out to fix under their 'Home Care Plan' service. The bathroom is directly above the kitchen and there was a slight bow in the ceiling to begin with anyway, which was more than likely caused by the same leak before anyway.

Sometime after the leak stopped, a crack appeared in the kitchen ceiling. We told the landlord about this but he didn't even come around to check it for himself, so we told him a week later, and then two weeks later and in the end got fed up of telling him. He still didn't come around to see it for himself.

The handle on the front door then started to go, which he wouldn't repair, he told us to go down to B&Q and pick a new door up ourselves , which he said he'd pay for and for us to install ourselves!

Then he changed his mind and decided to work around the problem by chiselling half the innards in the door out.

As well as this there was black mould growing on the master bedroom ceiling which we told him needed getting rid of.

His response was that it was our fault for putting clothes on the radiators, something that we didn't do anyway!

Well these problems never got seen to, and are still present to this day, some have appeared and been there longer than others, but in our eyes they are all serious problems which need dealing with. At the end of the day the landlord is taking in £650 in complete profit each month from our hard earned money and he simply tries to blame these problems on us saying we "damaged" the house or ignores us full stop.

So we had had enough of asking him to fix the problems and instead decided to go through Environmental Health and see if they would do anything about the problems.

A nice lady from Environ. Health duly turned up a week or so later. She looked around the property and took photos of things like the black mould, kitchen ceiling, front door handle and other things....

smr
12-10-2009, 18:42 PM
She told us that the kitchen ceiling needed ripping down and replastering (at the moment there's a big crack spread from one side of the kitchen ceiling right into the middle of the ceiling.

She said the black mould would need an examination to see what the cause of it is. She served him with a notice (in January) to get fixed heating in the study... ie. a radiator. I even told her what he had said about the study being a playroom and she said "It doesn't matter, it's being USED as a room, it must have fixed heating in."

Well she went away to do her reports and what not and ourselves and the landlord received the report in the post. So we thought, "hurray, somethings finally gonna get done at last"...

Well like I said, he received that in January and still nothing has been done.

In the summer of last year I was at one of my customers places fixing his computer when I noticed a leaflet behind me on a shelf (this customer is an estate agent - not linked with the landlord!)

I started reading this folded A4 sized piece of paper and that's the day I found out about the DPS. I'd never even heard nor knew it existed before then.

So imagine my horror when I read what it was about (as it was a leaflet about what the TDPS schemes are etc.) and when I came home I told my partner and we both looked at each other as if to say "well we've never heard anything about our deposit!!!"...

So of course I went next door (yes the LL lives next door to us) :( to ask very politely and calmly where our deposit was being held and how. He evaded the question and started talking about something else in one of those "must go - I'm late" replies where you can't get another word in edge ways.

I asked him several times after this on different days and over a period of 6 months or so where and how it was being protected, and each time he avoided the question.

Well at the end of THIS year's summer we got a letter from the DPS with information as to where and how our deposit is being protected. However, I noticed on the letter that it says "Start Date of Tenancy: July 2008"....

Erm, we've got a tenancy agreement here stating that we moved in in July 2007. That's funny isn't it.

By law it says the LL MUST protect the deposit WITHIN 14 CALENDAR DAYS.

We rang the DPS up and asked them about this and the DPS infact told us that he had handed the deposit into them in March 2009!!!

So July 2007 - > March 2009 .... That's the longest 14 calendar days I ever heard of.

I had a heated exchange with the LL last month and in the heat of the moment we handed in our tenancy notice to leave as we both cannot stand the thought of giving him anymore money, we need to find somewhere by next Wednesday, and still haven't found anywhere. But we'll probably be warmer in a cardboard box anyway than this freezer.

It doesn't look like the landlord wants to give us our deposit back either because last week he knocked on the front room window, about making us jump (which was nice of him - can't people use doors nowadays? Oh yeah, the bells never worked neither, adds to the list then)...

He goes "ah a mould inspector is coming around in a minute to inspect the mould"...

So we thought fair enough, let's see what he has to say, so he comes in, all badged up and looking legit and goes upstairs. He spends about 2 minutes there, comes back down and says to me "it's nothing you're doing wrong, the reason the mould has grown is because of the lack of ventilation in the house, there's no extractor fan in the bathroom so whenever you're having showers and doing normal everyday things like that there's no where for the steam to escape"...

So much for putting clothes on the radiator.

This guy then cleared off. The LL then says a plumber is coming around, so we said "what for, why do we need a plumber !?!" And he said "to inspect the kitchen ceiling"....

So I was thinking wtf. This guy comes around, not wearing a uniform, no badge. So I said to my partner, "where's his van"... looked outside and he had come in a crappy run down, dented up Nissan Micra...

So the LL and this "plumber" went upstairs into the bathroom , spent about a minute sharing some BS with eachother and then came back downstairs and walked out the house.

So I said to my partner that I wasn't having this and went around next door, knocked on and asked for a business card from this "plumber" because I said my Uncle was looking for a plumber and he said he didn't have any. So I said what company do you work for - I'll pass your details on... and he said I don't work for a company... so then the LL steps in and goes "I don't know why you're interoggating him. LOL.

So basically the LL just let a complete stranger (to us) into our house, gave us NO 24 hour warning he was coming around or anything. What if this guy had stolen from us?

So anyway, I went mad and then the LL said "whatever, you'll be hearing from our solicitors" and then I went even more mad and asked why and he said "damages"....

So he's trying to pin the crack in the ceiling, black mould on US!!!!!

In the end he gave us no choice but to hand our notice in.

Since we moved here we've never had a rent book, today we asked for it so we could have a photocopy, or at least just get a photocopy of it, and he said "it's with my solicitors, they are looking through the rent arrears"....

So I was livid after hearing this. I went to his post office this morning with my partner and we asked what he was going on about...

He said we had been in arrears since March. Well that's funny because sometime during the summer of this year he served us with a Section 8 for non payment of arrears... so we paid the 400 quid outstanding, signed HIS rent book, and then he said "In the morning I shall contact my solicitors and tell them you have paid all up to date... This was during the summer - WELL after March.

And this is just the kind of cold, calculating man he is. It's just too bad for him he can't get his dates right before he insists on lieing to us.

So anyway, we've had enough of him threatening us with eviction notices for rent arrears and solicitors for "damage" to his house so we' decided we're going to take him to court for not protecting our Deposit within the 14 calendar days required by law. If there wasn't a time limit for protecting the deposit then the landlord would be free to protect it even AFTER the tenant's had given their notice in to leave!!!!

If we lose it will be a complete mockery of the law and justice system.

/rant.

1. How long was the fixed term of the tenancy? 12 months
2. Was it an AST? Yes
3. When did it start - 1st July 2007 - October 21st 2009
4. Did you move out during the fixed term? No
5. Was your deposit protected with DPS? Yes, but only protected in March 2009
6. Were you given details about the scheme, and the adjudication procedure? Yeah, after years of asking and worrying.
7. Was there an inventory? No, no check in inventory.
8. Did you sign it? No, as there wasn't one.
9. Were there other students who were co-tenants? No.

smr
12-10-2009, 18:55 PM
We moved into a property (AST. 12 month fixed contract) in July 2007.

Our landlord did NOT protect our deposit until March 2009. We have undergone lots of stress and worry during this time, not knowing if he's spent it on himself etc.

Are we still able to make a claim for 3 x the deposit and the deposit itself? We have already handed our notice in and are leaving on the 21st of this month.

westminster
12-10-2009, 19:12 PM
I'm not sure if there is a question contained in your two incredibly long posts as I just skimmed through to the end, but in terms of deposit disputes, the deposit is protected, so the LL will have to prove any claimed dedutions, either to an adjudicator or a court.

As for your claim for non-compliance with deposit protection, such claims must be issued on form N208. There's a good chance the claim would then be referred to the Multi-Track. In this track, it could cost you up to £1,000 to reach the hearing stage, you might need to pay an advocate to appear for you, and you would also be exposed to the defendant's legal costs if you lost or discontinued the claim. See -

http://painsmith.wordpress.com/2009/05/21/proper-place-for-tds-claims/

It appears that the deposit is protected and the prescribed info provided. The LL may have a good chance of defeating your claim, as late compliance is not a cause of action under s.214 of the Housing Act 2004.

Your success will depend partly on the expertise of your advocate and the defendant's advocate, and partly on the personal interpretation of the judge on this part of the statute (different judges take different views on this defence i.e. late compliance).

But you may be lucky and the court may allocate the claim to the small claims track, where cost consequences are much reduced. Make sure you ask for this on the allocation questionnaire.

Also, it will help your case if you submit a concise witness statement and do not expect a judge to read through yards of text trying to find what point it is you're trying to make.

smr
12-10-2009, 19:16 PM
What's the "prescribed info"? All we got is one A4 piece of paper from the DPS saying our deposit was with them...

westminster
12-10-2009, 19:20 PM
https://www.depositprotection.com/public/documentlibrary/agentinfo.aspx

smr
12-10-2009, 19:22 PM
https://www.depositprotection.com/public/documentlibrary/agentinfo.aspx

We've never seen nor heard of that before. The landlord or DPS haven't sent us that form. Infact, the landlord has never sent us anything... all we have received is the letter from the DPS in the summer of this year.

p_cas
12-10-2009, 19:32 PM
Well, I can't read through all that either, sorry. But the thing that jumps out at me is that you've been there since July 2007. Why stay that long if it's been so bad?

If you write a more concise version of this epic you may get more responses.

smr
12-10-2009, 19:34 PM
Are you doing a follow up to the post you made at the start of the year?

http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=16480

You will only get opinions here, not a judgment, so I'm not sure if answers you get this month will be any more useful or different to the answers back in January.

Well yeah, it's a different question to back then though. Back then he hadn't protected it, now he has... but my question is is whether we have an air tight case to bring to the courts on the grounds that he didn't protect the deposit within the 14 calendar days. I mean even 15 days after is bad enough, as surely the LL has broken the law... but 22 months... that's ridiculous. We underwent a lot of stress and worry between the time we found out about the DP schemes and the letter we received from The DPS.

If the LL's can bend the rules with the 14 calendar days ruling then surely they are at liberty to protect the deposit even a week after the tenant hands in their notice to leave..!!

"It's ok Judge, I did protect it, it might not have been 14 days - I just want to make a mockery of the law - but I did protect it a week or two before the tenant's left!"

p_cas
12-10-2009, 19:34 PM
You are able to make a claim, but based on what others have found you probably wont win.

smr
12-10-2009, 19:37 PM
You are able to make a claim, but based on what others have found you probably wont win.

well he's made it very clear to us that he isn't going to give us our deposit back when we've done nothing wrong, this doesn't sound fair.

Mars Mug
12-10-2009, 19:42 PM
If the LL's can bend the rules with the 14 calendar days ruling then surely they are at liberty to protect the deposit even a week after the tenant hands in their notice to leave..!!

"It's ok Judge, I did protect it, it might not have been 14 days - I just want to make a mockery of the law - but I did protect it a week or two before the tenant's left!"

Please don't take offence, but if you ever get to speak in court you will lose, even if you tone down the way you say it.

You need very good legal advice and representation.

westminster
12-10-2009, 19:51 PM
my question is is whether we have an air tight case....

.....If the LL's can bend the rules with the 14 calendar days ruling then surely they are at liberty to protect the deposit even a week after the tenant hands in their notice to leave..!!

"It's ok Judge, I did protect it, it might not have been 14 days - I just want to make a mockery of the law - but I did protect it a week or two before the tenant's left!"

As I already said, late compliance is not a cause of action. See s.214(1)(a) of HA2004. The 3x deposit penalty is highly punitive in order to encourage compliance and it is not, IMO, a "mockery of the law" if it is not applied in cases where the deposit has in fact been protected, however late.

Here's the statute. Read it.
http://www.opsi.gov.uk/ACTS/acts2004/ukpga_20040034_en_19#pt6-ch4

You do not have an "air tight" case.

mind the gap
12-10-2009, 19:51 PM
I agree with Mars Mug, and besides, LLs have escaped the 3x penalty by protecting just before end of tenancy - it could be prove very expensive for you.

Lilly
12-10-2009, 21:26 PM
If the deposit is protected (do you have the certificate?) Then you'll have the use of a free arbitration service to get your deposit back through. The LL will be bound to this if the money is protected.

Did you do a thorough check in inventory?

Lilly
12-10-2009, 21:29 PM
AS westminster points out, where in the act does it say that protecting the deposit after 14 days, but before trial leads to the penalty? I suspect the OP reads S214(2) of the HA2004. (is it bad I know this part of the statute off by heart now!?)

smr
12-10-2009, 21:57 PM
If the deposit is protected (do you have the certificate?) Then you'll have the use of a free arbitration service to get your deposit back through. The LL will be bound to this if the money is protected.

Did you do a thorough check in inventory?

yeah we have the certificate. There is no inventory. The LL didn't draw up an inventory when we moved into the property or even suggest anything of sort. Which is laughable considering he says we owe him money for "damages" to his property. The Judge would laugh in his face.

smr
12-10-2009, 22:00 PM
Then I have a simple question if you guys wouldn't mind answering it. If LLs can protect the deposit at anytime why does it even mention 14 days. Surely the law should say something more like "the landlord must protect the deposit within the time that tenant is inhabiting the property."

Forgive me if I'm totally missing the point here, I'm tired.

smr
12-10-2009, 22:01 PM
I agree with Mars Mug, and besides, LLs have escaped the 3x penalty by protecting just before end of tenancy - it could be prove very expensive for you.

Not if I get free legal aid which I should be entitled to though...

mind the gap
12-10-2009, 22:07 PM
Then I have a simple question if you guys wouldn't mind answering it. If LLs can protect the deposit at anytime why does it even mention 14 days. Surely the law should say something more like "the landlord must protect the deposit within the time that tenant is inhabiting the property."

Forgive me if I'm totally missing the point here, I'm tired.

The legislation was poorly drafted and the wording has led to confusion at court hearings. Some LLs have been penalised for late protection; most have not.

smr
12-10-2009, 22:11 PM
The legislation was poorly drafted and the wording has led to confusion at court hearings. Some LLs have been penalised for late protection; most have not.

So then if I get the go ahead for free legal help I have nothing to lose and a chance of winning.

I realise most of you guys are probably landlords yourselves as this website is landlordzone after all so I don't expect I'll get much support or encouragement to go ahead with this. But I did just do a forum search and found a thread about "late deposit protection" and the guys who replied on there seemed to be a lot more positive about that particular tenant having a case! :D

mind the gap
12-10-2009, 22:12 PM
yeah we have the certificate. There is no inventory. The LL didn't draw up an inventory when we moved into the property or even suggest anything of sort. Which is laughable considering he says we owe him money for "damages" to his property. The Judge would laugh in his face.


You seem to be confused about the process of disputing your LL's claim using the DPS arbitration service. It does not involve a judge, or a court hearing. You submit your claim on paper/electronically; your LL submits his.

The adjudicator decides who gets what.

Your LL has the right not to use the scheme arbitration service but to go through the courts. Either way, the onus will be on him to prove that the deductions he proposes are justified. Without an agreed check-in inventory he will struggle to prove you owe him anything.

Please stop generating new threads about the same thing!

mind the gap
12-10-2009, 22:17 PM
So then if I get the go ahead for free legal help I have nothing to lose and a chance of winning.

I realise most of you guys are probably landlords yourselves as this website is landlordzone after all so I don't expect I'll get much support or encouragement to go ahead with this. But I did just do a forum search and found a thread about "late deposit protection" and the guys who replied on there seemed to be a lot more positive about that particular tenant having a case! :D

Good grief. We help everyone, not just landlords.

You have received some expert advice here and if you choose to ignore it, good luck to you. We offer it free of fear or favour!

Moderator, pleae merge all the nighmarishly longwinded threads on the same topic by this poster.

Moderator1
12-10-2009, 22:22 PM
Five separate threads by same member have been merged here. Do not cause problems by starting continuation threads; use the same one.

smr
12-10-2009, 22:24 PM
Good grief. We help everyone, not just landlords.

You have received some expert advice here and if you choose to ignore it, good luck to you. We offer it free of fear or favour!

Moderator, pleae merge all the nighmarishly longwinded threads on the same topic by this poster.

Thanks for the advice and all, and it probably is "expert" but I also find it pretty conflicting. For instance, in one of your replies on another thread you reply to a landlord saying that they may very well lose their appeal to a 3x deposit claim but to me you're saying its basically not worth going ahead with the claim.

"Late compliance with deposit protection is not cited in the statute as a reason for the 3x penalty to be applied (see s.214 of HA2004). The penalty applies only to 1) not protecting the deposit, 2) not providing the prescribed information, or 3) non-compliance with the "initial requirements" of the scheme. Here's the statute s.212-215:"

Our LL didn't prescribe us with the information neither. So in your own words, we therefore do indeed have a "reason" for the penalty being awarded to us.

mind the gap
12-10-2009, 22:30 PM
Thanks for the advice and all, and it probably is "expert" but I also find it pretty conflicting. For instance, in one of your replies on another thread you reply to a landlord saying that they may very well lose their appeal to a 3x deposit claim but to me you're saying its basically not worth going ahead with the claim.

"Late compliance with deposit protection is not cited in the statute as a reason for the 3x penalty to be applied (see s.214 of HA2004). The penalty applies only to 1) not protecting the deposit, 2) not providing the prescribed information, or 3) non-compliance with the "initial requirements" of the scheme. Here's the statute s.212-215:"

Our LL didn't prescribe us with the information neither. So in your own words, we therefore do indeed have a "reason" for the penalty being awarded to us.

It will hinge on whether the judge you get interprets the wording of the statute in a way which favours you, or in a way which favours your LL. As I said, it's a pig's ear.

Going by what has been reported on this forum, fewer Ts have won cases like yours than have lost them. It's up to you.

I'm glad to see this thread has been re-titled.

Lilly
13-10-2009, 09:06 AM
To me its pretty clear.

If, at the time of the case going to court, the deposit isnt protected, and the deposit hasnt been returned, then 3x penalty applies

If, at the time of the case going to court, the deposit is protected, and the information is NOT given, then 3x penatly applies.

If, at the time of the case going to court, the deposit is protected, and the information IS given, then 3x penalty does not apply.

smr
13-10-2009, 11:15 AM
To me its pretty clear.

If, at the time of the case going to court, the deposit isnt protected, and the deposit hasnt been returned, then 3x penalty applies

If, at the time of the case going to court, the deposit is protected, and the information is NOT given, then 3x penatly applies.

If, at the time of the case going to court, the deposit is protected, and the information IS given, then 3x penalty does not apply.

The middle one applies to us.

Mars Mug
13-10-2009, 11:33 AM
In this post you say you have the deposit scheme certification?

http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showpost.php?p=164016&postcount=42

smr
13-10-2009, 11:49 AM
In this post you say you have the deposit scheme certification?

http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showpost.php?p=164016&postcount=42

All we've ever received is one letter from the DPS starting "Your agent/ landlord has successfully submitted a deposit to the DPS."

Then it just lists the deposit ID, rental property and he has also lied because it says :

Start date of Tenancy: 01 June 2008
Date Deposit Received: 01 June 2008

We have a tenancy agreement with us starting from July 1st 2007, which is when we moved in :D Lying ****.

Anyway, we have NOT, therefore, received the prescribed information as per 213. 6 (a) of the Housing Act 2004 and can consequently claim 3 times the amount of the deposit and the deposit itself.

smr
13-10-2009, 11:53 AM
Furthermore, I've just read this :

"He cannot rely on simply giving a signed copy of the information certificate to the tenant - the tenant may forget or even deny that he has ever received the statutory TDP information. So it is important that the landlord or agent retains a copy of the signed Deposit Information Certificate, (or the signed tenancy agreement containing similar information) for his files."

We have never signed anything OTHER than the tenancy agreement which had no information whatsoever about the Deposit Protection Schemes etc.

Mars Mug
13-10-2009, 12:11 PM
So if asked in court would you plan to deny having received anything at all from the DPS?

smr
13-10-2009, 13:08 PM
So if asked in court would you plan to deny having received anything at all from the DPS?

Of course not, I'm not a liar, I'd bring all the evidence and paper work we've ever received in reference to our deposit - which is as aforementioned - ONE sheet of A4 paper :)

Mars Mug
13-10-2009, 14:39 PM
I don’t know what the full extent of documentation is to be expected, and I’m not sure you do either, so I am suggesting you check just in case you actually have all the relevant information. If you do then the deposit is protected and you have been informed, therefore your case against the landlord weakens.

smr
13-10-2009, 15:12 PM
I don’t know what the full extent of documentation is to be expected, and I’m not sure you do either, so I am suggesting you check just in case you actually have all the relevant information. If you do then the deposit is protected and you have been informed, therefore your case against the landlord weakens.

That may very well be the case but I was under the impression (and I am new to all of this) that the prescribed information was mandatory. I have downloaded said form from the DPS website and upon inspecting it concluded that I have never seen anything like it before. This is what led me to believe that the landlord had breached his duty of care with regards to the deposit.

If anyone would care to shed some light on exactly what the "prescribed information" is I would be very much appreciative.

smr
13-10-2009, 15:20 PM
Just off topic slightly but wanted to know - should we give 30 or 28 days notice, we were on an AST 12 month fixed term agreement which then rolled over month by month. We've only ever signed the initial agreement drawn up when we moved in. Thanks.

mind the gap
13-10-2009, 15:24 PM
That may very well be the case but I was under the impression (and I am new to all of this) that the prescribed information was mandatory. I have downloaded said form from the DPS website and upon inspecting it concluded that I have never seen anything like it before. This is what led me to believe that the landlord had breached his duty of care with regards to the deposit.

If anyone would care to shed some light on exactly what the "prescribed information" is I would be very much appreciative.

You seem to be missing the point somewhat.

Although (as has been explained to you more than once!), the legislation seems to allow for the possibility of the 3x penalty if the LL has protected late but not supplied the prescribed info (which is, incidentally just the details of the scheme used and how to reclaim your deposit at the end, details of the adjudication service for disputes, etc), the experience of people who have posted on this forum on the subject seems to be mixed. Some judges have interpreted the law in favour of the tenants, other in favour of the LLs.

Apart from anything else, if your LL has a brain at all, he will probably issue you with the prescribed info as soon as he gets the court summons, which will weaken your case further. At that point, you would be advised to apply for your deposit back through the scheme and only go to court if he refuses to use the scheme.

All we are saying is, you can reasonably expect to get your deposit back, but do not book a holiday in Magaluf on the strength of the 3x penalty. Others will be able to advise you better than I about how much going to court will cost you if you do not win the 3x penalty. If, as you hope, you get Legal Aid, then it will probably not concern you anyway. :rolleyes:

Does anyone know?

mind the gap
13-10-2009, 15:26 PM
Just off topic slightly but wanted to know - should we give 30 or 28 days notice, we were on an AST 12 month fixed term agreement which then rolled over month by month. We've only ever signed the initial agreement drawn up when we moved in. Thanks.

Do you pay your rent monthly or weekly?

smr
13-10-2009, 15:28 PM
You seem to be missing the point somewhat.

Although (as has been explained to you more than once!), the legislation seems to allow for the possibility of the 3x penalty if the LL has protected late but not supplied the prescribed info (which is, incidentally just the details of the scheme used and how to reclaim your deposit at the end, details of the adjudication service for disputes, etc), the experience of people who have posted on this forum on the subject seems to be mixed. Some judges have interpreted the law in favour of the tenants, other in favour of the LLs.

All we are saying is, you can reasonably expect to get your deposit back, but do not book a holiday in Magaluf on the strength of the 3x penalty. Others will be able to advise you better than I about how much going to court will cost you if you do not win the 3x penalty. If, as you hope, you get Legal Aid, then it will probably not concern you anyway. :rolleyes:

Does anyone know?

So we've basically got a 50/50 case. I guess if we go through with it via legal aid we'd have nothing to lose.

smr
13-10-2009, 15:29 PM
Do you pay your rent monthly or weekly?

we pay weekly.

jta
13-10-2009, 15:37 PM
we pay weekly.

Is the rental amount payable by the week, by the fortnight or by the month?
I'm talking about the rental periods, not when you actually pay. If it's due weekly, do you have a rent book?

I wouldn't hold your breath about getting legal aid if you are going to make a small claim.