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Irksome

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  1. Thank you Lea - very interesting. I'd seen something about this, and was wondering what the position would be with regard to sending a letter before action - but I'd read http://www.furleypage.co.uk/changes-regarding-protection-of-tenants-deposits-following-the-localism-act-2011/ which seems to imply that that is not necessary. Regarding the Small Claims vs Multi-Track route, have you seen https://anthonygold.co.uk/latest/legal-insight/jackson-laspo-and-housing-cases? I can't however appear to find a clear answer at http://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/rules under Part 56 nor the Pratice Direction 56 ... maybe I'm looking in the wrong place or Andrew Brookes has got it wrong?
  2. Thank you - there seems to be very little recently about this. Most of the opinion pre-dates these apparent reforms, and I can't seem to find anything definitive recently. Maybe there simply aren't many deposit cases any longer!
  3. How much are you talking about (electricity bills per month / quarter)? What's your rent? How big is the residence? Who exactly told you that (don't name them here!), do you have a record of the conversation / time / date? Why when you had high electricity bills did you not consider the immersion heater could be responsible at the first bill?
  4. Hello, I have a joint AST (with my wife) with a large housing association paying Market Rent - ie we pay a rent equivalent (indeed in excess of) what the private sector would charge. Our deposit was paid at the beginning of the AST, and protected in the mydeposits scheme. We received the prescribed deposit information at the beginning of the AST in May 2012. We have not received any further prescribed information since the beginning of the AST in May 2012. The initial fixed term was 6 months, and we've been on a statutory periodic since November 2012. In January this year I received notice from mydeposits that our deposit in no longer protected by their scheme. I chose to do nothing about this at the time, as I was aware that this made it impossible for the LL to serve a section 21 notice. I have no reason to believe that the LL has taken any action to re-protect the deposit in any scheme. Obviously the LL would have been notified by mydeposits that the deposit was about to be unprotected, but chose not to take the simple action of ticking the check box to ensure the deposit protection continued. I'm now considering bringing the AST to an end, and considering my legal options regarding the return of the deposit, and the 1-3 times penalty. Can anyone confirm that it is now possible to claim for the return of the deposit and compensation via the Small Claims track (my deposit is just under £3K - so a claim for £3K plus the 1-3 times penalty is between £6K and 12K?) post the Jackson reforms implemented last year? Does anyone have any experience of this - I don't want to go down the route of a no-win no fee solicitor (indeed if it is still Part 8 I will hire a decent solicitor).
  5. With respect to the My Deposits site, the latest opinion on it is available in the joint guidance issued by all the schemes. If the law is not retrospective, then the actual Superstrike vs Rodriguez case couldn't have been found for the plaintiff - ie if it were not retrospective then the court would not have found it applied to a T that rolled into a SPT in January 2007.
  6. The Superstrike rules does apply retrospectively, because its the first time the law has been clarified on the point of whether a tenancy 'renews' when going from Fixed Term to SPT, or whether the tenancy is a new T. If you look at the actual case, the high court ruled that when the T rolled from fixed term to SPT a new T was created and at that point it was necessary for the LL to protect the deposit and serve the prescribed information. This applies to all tenancies where they roll into a SPT, whether the deposit was originally required to be protected or not.
  7. Its a tricky situation you find yourself in ... but you're empowered by having the information available to you. I too have too very young children, and can empathise with your situation, and to a certain extent I can understand the position of your LL - but I think you have to put yourself and your family first. If you fight undoubtedly it will be stressful - how stressful is really up to you and how much you believe in your position and how certain you feel your legal position is, we can only advise you but you should get some independent advice. The idea of your LL (or a 'representative' turning up at the doorstep is uncomfortable, but if you prepare for that eventuality then you can be sure to say the right things - ie please go away and put this in writing. I wouldn't be particularly bothered if the house 'sells', they aren't likely to complete if your tenants, and even if they do, the whole process resets with the new LL. If you show your hand now it could weaken your position, however you could decide to talk to your LL and explain (maybe not too precisely) that you think your position is quite strong and that you'd like to negotiate an extension to the tenancy to end on a set date - ie you agree to vacate on X date rather than resorting to the courts decision which would be expensive (for the LL).
  8. It appears that you have ample grounds (too many perhaps) to argue that the S.21 notice you've been served is invalid. What you do next is a matter for you to weigh up, but it appears clear to me that if you want to stay in this property, at the moment (and don't go more than 1 month in arrears or breach any of the terms of your tenancy) the LL has no chance of getting you out by legal means. Just remember, you may need to prove your evidence / arguement. I would suggest its unwise to inform your LL of any of the evidence you may be relying on as it wouldn't take much to come up with a counter defence.
  9. Sorry to disagree with you, but I think you missed the point about the Superstrike ruling (which is why its thrown the lettings industry into chaos). The key point of the Superstrike ruling is that when the Tenancy changes from a Fixed AST to a SPT AST then a new T is created. The implication is that therefore the deposit may need to be re-protected or renewed (depending on the scheme rules) and the prescribed info must be reserved in order to follow the legislation about protecting deposits. Just because the ruling was made in June 2013 isn't relevant, its clearly retrospective as it applied to a T that became an SPT AST in January 2008. Unless its subsequently challenged and changed by the Supreme Court or Statute (which I don't believe happened in the Localism Act of 2012 that the deposit relates to a new T and therefore must be treated as such. I am both LL, and a T with affected Tenancies and also work for several estate agencies and have been watching as they scramble to sort this mess out, SPT's all being turned into new fixed term tenancies and deposits being re-protected en mass.
  10. If you were not served the prescribed information then the S.21 notice you've been issued is potentially invalid. Google Prescribed Information for futher details. This is all to do with the Superstrike case, and AFAIK has not yet been tested in court, however it appears that when a tenancy rolls over from a Fixed Term to a SPT, the law considers that a new tenancy and as such the deposit must be re-protected (or protection renewed) and the prescribed information ( the certificate and accompanying notes) must be re-served. If they are not re-served within 30 days then a breach of the legislation occurs and the tenant is able to claim between 1 and 3 times the deposit (+ the original deposit) as a penalty and a Section 21 notice may not legally be served until such time as the prescribed information is served or the deposit is returned (in full - and that doesn't preclude your right to the penalty award!). For your circumstances this may give you the breathing space you require, at least as a delaying tactic without getting all legal on them.
  11. Were you re-served the prescribed information at the expiry of your AST? At that point your tenancy became a SPT, and you should have been given the prescribed information. if you were not, then your Section 21 is not valid. Also is your deposit held with MyDeposits or one of the other services? If its MyDeposits then have you checked to see that your deposit is still protected - they automatically unprotect deposits when a tenancy rolls into a SPT and the LL doesn't inform them.
  12. Very interesting thread, thanks for all your information - I am in dispute (have been since 2003 ish) with Powergen and today picked up some letters at my old flat suggesting that Powergen were going to seek a Warrant. Will I get a notification of the Warrant application before its granted from the court? I'd like the magistrate to be aware that the account is in dispute when deciding whether to award the Warrant, and so make sure that they have the information. MTIA Irksome
  13. Ali's pointed me to this too - I'll certainly see what interest I can drum up
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