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Everything posted by waterbottle

  1. Have a search for unfair penalty charges in some of the banking forums. If you pay late then you may incur some penalties but it may well be the case that you can only be charged their realistic costs. This would not include £20 per letter!
  2. Good luck pickle. I was interested to see that it is up to the LL/agent to prove that they complied with the act. Why is that? Why not Pickle having to prove non compliance? For information, my deposit was protected but not within 14 days. Neither the scheme nor the agents nor the LL sent me anything to confirm this so it seems that I have a claim. I requested info from the scheme and they sent me a form with no signatures in the specified places and stating the dates of protection BUT... It is not hard for people to provide something fake i.e. certificate of posting and letter. What constitutes proof? Is it enough for the LL to show he has sent the info? Once again, best of luck pickle!
  3. I used to work for Barclays. If I find a contract I'll let you see a copy. Mailman, don't be so defeatist. A few years ago no one had got a bank charge back. I regard this whole industry as a criminal cartel. Good luck Josh IOU.
  4. It is my opinion that standards of behaviour by companies and organisations are permanently damaging the collective health of the UK. Not enough people talk about 'maladministration'. The UK is riddled with it yet there is very little that can be done to punish offenders unless they happen to be private individuals. My personal experience is that every organisation I have dealt with in the last 5 years has attempted maladministration to the effect that they gain or save money and I lose out. This includes: The Police and the Independant Police Complaints Commission The Open University (accounts dept.) The NHS and its appeals service The DWP The Council of every Borough in which I've lived Every private landlord I've used Every letting agent I've used Every bank I've had an account with Every telecommunications company I've had a contract with The Community Legal Service South West Trains The Citizens Advice Bureau I can't remember any more but I've written them down. The practice is encouraged by the refusal to make people accountable for maladministration. Each employee needs to hit their target and this is almost the only criteria for promotion. Employees therefore act in an amoral way secure in the knowledge that the only way that things will change is if a tenacious and effective individual has the endurance to force the matter before someone impartial. Then the decision is overturned and the employee is informed of their error. The only way to avoid injustice in such a society is to behave like a psychopath obsessed with accumulating money. This is exactly what all companies now do. Aquisitive people are adapting en masse. Recently I attended the court regarding council tax. I was surprised to discover that four council employees were using the court room for 'meetings'. I personally heard a council employee tell a disabled old man a pack of lies to get him to hand over money for council tax which he should not have been liable for. A bit later a pregnant woman was almost in tears. In each case the council employee was interested in only one thing... 'securing a payment'. Our children are the unhappiest in Europe. Our Adults probably are too. I read about someone having agoraphobia from debt. I have, for a few years, had a feeling where I freeze at the thought of doing any administrative work. This includes even going into an office to hand in a letter or opening my post. I manage sporadic periods of energy but these are countered by long periods of paralysis. In person I'm intelligent and articulate but this counts against me with regard to getting help. The NHS use a system of referalls for assesment combined with 'lost' post and 'mistakes' which mean that they can claim they are 'dealing' with a patient whilst in fact doing almost nothing; and somewhere a civil servant cuts costs and gets promoted. Sorry if this reads like a rant but really, no one wants to know. I know I'm not the only one but I think that some people don't realise that society is having this effect on them. What I would like is some sort of guidance on how to get media attention for this, particularly Lord Nolans recommendations regarding punishment for maladministration. Any suggestions or advice gratefully received.
  5. Sorry to be picky over the details here but: Furniture is defined as: items such as chairs, tables, beds, cupboards, etc. which are put into a house or other building to make it suitable and comfortable for living or working in: Does this mean that almost anything would count as furniture? I realise the act has exemptions but 'shortlydwarf' also mentioned wood. Is this also exempted? The bases of our dining chairs are a sort of fine wicker which has been worn to a frayed fuzz at some points. 'Ideal kindling' in my opinion. It wouldn't pass any sort of match/cigarette test.
  6. I have told them what happened but I can't get anywhere with them. They just take ages to reply and then fob me off.
  7. I'm slowly working through all the myriad of problems that are stored up and trying to get myself back on my feet. Last year I was on JSA. It was stopped as I failed to apply for a job. I wrote back to say that the job had been totally unsuitable and that I did not have the required qualifications. I have been fighting with the JC since then about this but they lie, refuse to answer questions or deliberately misunderstand. I am now at the stage of taking it to the independant claims assessor. However, the stopping of JSA triggered my HB to stop. Also fighting the council about this. Can anyone tell me whether the council are right to stop HB when JSA is stopped, as my award of HB was income based and my JSA suspension didn't increase my income, it stopped it. For information I am close to the tribunal stage with the local council. Lastly, has anyone noticed that the lower you slip down the financial scale the more organisations rely on maladministration to try and make you go away? Sometimes I think I'm going insane because it is by far the biggest problem in my life yet almost nothing appears about it in the papers. So to clarify, I really need to know about whether the council were right to stop my HB because JSA was stopped.
  8. Hi there. I can't offer a definitive answer but I can offer some advice which I think might be helpful. It would be a good idea to try and put your payment proposals in writing. With regard to the £25 fee you will have to do a bit of work to claim them back. I think that, as with bank charges, it would be regarded as a penalty because it doesn't represent the real cost to the agency. You shouldn't really have to pay it. Are you a long way behind with payments? How much have you paid in fees? If you put some details up here someone will probably be able to tell you exactly how to phrase a letter to the debt collector. Also, make sure you get receipts every time you pay cash. If you don't have all the receipts don't tell the company as they sound a bit dodgy. Lastly, can anyone reading this offer any advice about the implication of an IVA being involved? If the applicant cannot afford to live properly, perhaps the IVA can be adjusted... Good luck and try not to worry about this. Authoritative help should be along soon.
  9. I thought I'd better 'bump' this thread up to the top because if I have got it right and someone can confirm my reasoning then it could be useful information for others. I have seen other attempts to cut through this complicated matter but none of them applied to my circumstances which were: sent no notification re TDS found that deposit had been protected but not within 14 days
  10. Any news from Grid66 or anyone regarding this matter? My deposit was registered but not within the 14 day period. I have paper evidence of this. I was not contacted by anyone about my deposit. There does seem to be some confusion over this. I have tried to do some reading. In my case I will use this argument: Section 213.3 states that the 'initial requirements' must be complied with within 14 days of receipt by LL of deposit. Section 213.4 then clarifies that the 'initial requirements' referred to above are the requirements that the landlord must undertake. (213.4 is referred to later) 213.5 says what the LL must then do and 213.6 says how and when it must be done. A panic may occur because to 'qualify' for the 3x payment the court must be satisfied that the 'initial requirements' or those of section 213.6.a have not been met. It is then easy to look at 213.6.a and see that it requires the info to be given in a particular or similar form. Tenants will see that 213.6.b is not mentioned with regard to the 3x payment. BUT, the 'initial requirements' as I mentioned before (213.4) will not have been met if the action in 213.3 is not completed. 213.3 states that: 'the initial requirements of an authorised scheme must be complied with by the landlord in relation to the deposit within the period of 14 days beginning with the date on which it is received.' Therefore if the deposit was protected but not withing the 14 day period and you have proof of this then you can make an application to the CC. (214.1.a) Under 214.2.a the court must be satisfied that the 'initial requirements' have not been met. If the court is satisfied then 214.4 says that it must order the payment of a sum equal to 3x the deposit within 14 days of the order. I have no legal training but I am trying to teach myself. I would be grateful if someone could tell me whether what I have written: makes sense as a legal argument is useful I would also dearly like hear how grid66 got on. Please tell us or post a link!
  11. Can anyone detail the court's thinking behind not awarding the 3x amount for non compliance? The section I have read seems to be black and white, stating that 'if not A then B', but I am fairly new to law so other things may be considered.
  12. Thanks very much for the help. I have sent a letter off to the agents and the landlord. I will update when something happens. Until then, any further input would be valued. Does the above mentioned act refer to dining chairs that have loose and flammable looking straw/wicker that functions as the seat base? They have not got a valid Corgi certificate for the boiler and none of the paperwork/checklists that are necessary. We had 2 boiler breakdowns and subsequent short circuits at the beginning of the tenancy. How can I bargain with these things effectively? 'Do what I ask or I'll report you?' Is there a better tactic than this? One dodgy socket as well. I found the Plugs and Sockets etc. Act. One extension cord with uninsulated plug.
  13. I forgot to say. It does say furnished but it doesn't say junk shop or jumble sale. The whole place is unbelieveably full and we made it a writen condition (we have a record) that ornaments must be removed. They acknowledge this but didn't do it and it was not included on our contract, yet the other conditions were. Other than that the place is rammed with loads of linen and other crap.
  14. Excellent, thank you. That is just what I wanted to hear. I'll send them a note saying the inventory is invalid and that they need to collect their stuff or I will bin it and charge them. For anyone interested I have written to the borough commander of the local police force. I have complained about the police's untrue statement about forcing entry not being a crime. I will let you know what reply I get. As there was some harassment I thought about claiming illegal eviction. As I understand it the crime is commited if they do anything which is intended to make me leave whether I leave or not. If I pay the rent due before the court date and the judge finds partly in my favour for withholding fees who will be liable for costs? The LLs solicitors are claiming that it will be about £850. Harsh surely. Anyway, I will keep posting everything here as it happens.
  15. Sorry to post again so quickly. The act talks about 14 days maximum after the money has been received by the LL. What if the agent receives the money and simply doesn't pass it to the landlord? Can this mean that the 3x penalty can be refused on a technicality? Does it say somewhere that LL and Agent are interchangable or one and the same? Probably useful to find this out as soon as possible.
  16. With respect it doesn't say that it must be 'sent'. It says: (6) The information required by subsection (5) must be given to the tenant and any relevant person— (a) in the prescribed form or in a form substantially to the same effect, and (b) within the period of 14 days beginning with the date on which the deposit is received by the landlord. Thus 'given' is the key word. Online dictionary has a few relevant definitions of give: 2. To place in the hands of; pass: Law To execute and deliver. The key concept here seems to be one of completion. Sending would then be insufficient, you need to ensure receipt. Does anyone have an opinion on this? Lastly, this new TDS will seem harsh to some but I believe we need to look at it differently. Consider these points: 1. Deposits were widely abused by LLs who regarded the money as theirs until given back. Something drastic had to be done to correct this way of thinking. 2. The money belongs to the tenant until the LL can 'prove' he deserves it. In light of this, 14 days seems like a short time. Compare cheques clearing for banks. We feel 3 days is excessive. 14 days to transfer money that isn't yours is plenty. Any comment would be appreciated. I studied literature not law and am struggling to teach myself, mostly as a backlash against perpetually getting ripped off. Sometimes I hate this sodding country. This site gives me hope. Lastly, I would love to hear how things pan out with any TDS cases. Are there any links that I have missed?
  17. No one has signed the inventory though. We said we dispute it. They said 'what do you dispute.Send amended inventory'. We said we dispute the inventory. We weren't there for it and we didn't sign it. My housemate said she would send amended details. Then it became obvious that the whole thing was innacurate and I said 'use our complaints letters to asses failings in the inventory as to write a new one was too much of a job. After that things broke down. Surely there can be an amount of items in the flat that would be considered 'too much'. They didn't remove the ornaments that we specified as a condition on the agreement. They seem to have added more and filled cupboards with stuff. Can I claim a rent reduction on this and other stuff. (Microwave soiled to the point of being impossible to clean, DVD player didn't work, loads of other stuff.) Basically we didn't get what we paid for and are living with the consequences of their laziness. Does that make sense in light of the question about charging them rent for the space they are 'taking up'?
  18. What would be the implications of not receiving notification of deposit in TDS? If the deposit was with the TDS but the tenant was not notified, or the agent could not prove that the letter was received would the depositx3 still be repayable? Just a thought.
  19. Can anyone recommend a knowledgable poster to ask as I am struggling here?
  20. Can anyone help me with this? To clarify, what I want to know is: Given that my contract says that, after I leave, the landlord can i) charge me for storage and disposal of everything I leave behind ii)charge me rent if I leave furniture behind Can I do the same to him if he leaves stuff in the flat which inconveniences me? For example furniture that I asked to be removed and clutter that is unreasonably left and deprives me of storage space. I would see this as charging him a limited rent for the space he occupies. Is this known as reciprocity and mutuality or something else? More importantly, is it a sound legal argument? Please help as I can't afford a solicitor and we are still living out of boxes!
  21. Thank you for your reply Steve M. You are right that there are other issues that haven't been addressed. The place was dirty when we moved in and lots of things were broken. The agents tried to force their was in because they are Foxtons. Their motto is 'we are prepared to go to war for our customers', and they informed me of their intention to inspect. I pointed out that I required reasonable notice before they were given access. They came anyway; shouted outside the door for almost 50 minutes, after I had called the police non emergency line. Then they tried to let themselves in and we got into a pushing war with the front door. I called 999. They agents went away but came back to the flat escorted by the police. Then the police claimed that no crime had been commited. I read up and found this to be untrue and have written to them but received no response. Foxtons are Nazis. However, what I really need is authorative advice regarding the concept of 'reciprocity of contract'. As a concept, it has been mentioned on the bank charges threads. I think that when renting a furnished house one has the right to expect that cupboards ane not full of clutter. There must be a reasonable amount of items in a house. The LL won't take the stuff away so we are stuck with a mound of junk in the second bedroom. In the contract, they can charge storage and disposal for items, and rent is still payable after we've left when furniture is left behind in the flat. Can we do any of this to them for leaving so much clutter and bits of furniture behind? Many thanks to anyone who replies.
  22. When we moven into our property in September we found that a large amount of items had been left behind by previous inhabitants. Our inventory ran to 62 pages and this didn't cover everything. We have suffered myriad problems since then with this culminating in the agents attempting to force entry into the property. I have informed the police. Whilst there are many issues, my main concern at present is: Can we deduct an amount from the rent to cover the catalogue, boxing and storing of these items? On our contract it states that the landlord can charge a fee for storage and disposal of property left behind by us. I seem to remember the term 'reciprosity of contract' from the banking charges stuff. Does this mean that we can apply this charge to him in a similar way during our tenancy? I should just point out that, before we moved in we asked for a bed to be removed and for 'some of the ornaments' to be removed. When we moved in this bed was stored under our bed and even more ornaments had been moved in; hence the 62 page inventory. In addition, almost all the cupboards were filled with useless tat, from bedding to cardboard boxes of trinkets. Most of this was not inventoried. To give an indication of the scale of the problem, half empty bottles of booze and (rotting) food in the cupboards and fridge were inventoried. This clutter is stored in the second bedroom and takes up about half of the space. More is in cupboards and drawers. Should i threaten to bin it? We were not present at the inventory and so signed nothing. The agents said the flat was sold as seen. After four months we gave up and withheld rent. In addition there have been a huge number of other problems with the flat. A section 8 has now been issued because of rent arrears. I was hoping for guidance on how a judge would see this. This may well be a long and intricate dispute and I could really use the help of people who have experience. The stress is making me crazy. Many thanks to all who even read this far.
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