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Letting Agent didn't Protect Deposit.


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Hi

 

I'm new on the forum. I'm looking for some advice.

 

Last month I vacated a property that I had been letting through a letting agent / estate agent for over three years. An outgoing inspection was done and the report stated that the property was in overall good condition. I had maintained it and had paid for it to be re plastered and redecorate with the landlords permission. However, several days after the report I received a telephone call from the letting agent. They told me that the landlord had decided to keep all of the deposit. They didn't give a reason, just said he wasn't happy with the property. I wasn't given any further advice from the agent.

 

My sister did some research on the internet and found that I should have been given some paperwork about a tenancy deposit scheme when the tenancy began. I didn't receive this and neither did my mother who paid the deposit. I contacted the letting agents and was told they would look into it. Several hours later I received call to say the landlord had changed his mind and would now refund my full deposit, that the property was in good condition and there were no issues. I was shocked. I gave them my mothers bank details. My sister urged me to contact them again in regard to the tenancy scheme because she thought they had broken the law and could be fined. When I did so the agents suggested that I didn't need the details because I was getting refunded. My sister urged me to contact them again and demand the details, which I did. They told me they would deliver them in a few days. They didn't do so. When I contacted them again they admitted that due to an administrative error they had not protected the deposit. Sorry. Was there anything else?

 

I asked for the landlords details because I wanted to make sure that he had originally told them to keep my deposit. However, they haven't provided the details despite me continually asking. And furthermore they still haven't returned my mothers deposit. I have started a complaints process with them to get the deposit back but they are really dragging their heels. Sorry, to get to the point, do I need to go through this complaints process with them before I can go to court to try and get the deposit returned? And if they won't release the landlord's details can I put the agents name on the court form?

 

 

Thanks for any advice

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Ultimately it is the Landlord (LL) who is responsible for the deposit, and not the agent....

you can issue a letter before action to the LL asking for the whole deposit to be returned or a Money claim online case will be started. If the agent will not give you the LL details write to them and inform them that you will be taking them to court for withholding the information that they are legally bound to give you... Tell them it is because you are taking the LL to court for the deposit return and non protection nor issuing of prescribed protection information, with the agents as co-defendants..

 

I would bet my bottom dollar that the deposit is returned very quickly... If it is not, carry out the threats, and instigate court proceedings. You do not have to go through any estate agent grievance procedure to issue court proceedings.

I am not a solicitor :!::!:

 

Most of my knowledge came from this site :-D:-D

 

If I have been helpful in any way at all .............. Please click my star..... :-(:-(

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Thanks for the advice. I wondered whether I needed to go through their whole process which would take about a month. I really just want my deposit back from the landlord but they are unwilling to give me his details. I think he lives in Spain. They just seem to be burying their head in the sand and won't respond to any emails etc.

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You should sue the agent and the LL jointly for the deposit return. let the LA know that you are after them as they are his agent and thus liable as your dealings were with them. They are clearly lazy at best so wake them up and make them work for their money.

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Thanks again. They just won't respond to the landlord address request and that makes it difficult to know where to go next.Is the agents address okay for any court action if he won't disclose the landlord's address? It makes me wonder if he should have registererd the deposit on the landlords behalf and hasnt done it and dooes not want to tell tell the landlord. I wonder even if it was the landlord who said to keep my deposit in the first place

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Thanks again. They just won't respond to the landlord address request and that makes it difficult to know where to go next.Is the agents address okay for any court action if he won't disclose the landlord's address? It makes me wonder if he should have registererd the deposit on the landlords behalf and hasnt done it and dooes not want to tell tell the landlord. I wonder even if it was the landlord who said to keep my deposit in the first place

 

 

Sounds most likely scenario IMO.

Jointly name LA & LL in action. Serve identical set of papers on LA at their business address and for LL use the AST 'address for serving Notices'. Just claim for full unprotected deposit return. The Judge will award the additional discretionary 1-3x penalty, tech not a fine as it will be awarded to you, but is not yet a debt for which you cannot add to your claim, which should be described as claim for 'unprotected deposit'. Judge will decide whether LA or, most likely L,L is liable to pay. How much was the orig deposit?

Don't bother with LA complaint procedure.

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