Before court action, you need to send a letter before action. Send by normal and recorded delivery. Give your landlord 14 days to refund the deposit.
If the landlord fails to respond and/or refund the deposit you can then apply to the court.
Be aware that you may have to pay your landlord's costs if you lose the case.
Apply to your local county court using form N208. You can download this form, Google n208 hm courts and Tribunal Service.
If you prefer, you can pick up a form at your local county court.
If you need guidance in completing the form, Google form n208A hm courts and Tribunal Service.
You have to pay a court fee of £308 to start your claim, but can claim it back from your landlord if you win your case. You lose the court fee if you don't win.
You can apply for a fee reduction or exemption if you claim certain benefits or have a low income.
You need to provide the court with documents, attach copies of all the relevant documents to your claim form, such as:
- a copy of your AST
- evidence that you paid a tenancy deposit and when it was paid
- letters and emails to and from your landlord about your deposit
- details of enquiries you made with the tenancy deposit scheme
You can also make a claim for interest from the date your deposit should have been returned. You must ask for this on your claim form. The court rate is 8%.
In your letter before action, you will state that if the landlord fails to pay the deposit within the 14 day period you will go to court. As part of your claim, you will claim 8% interest and claim the court fee of £308. It is in the landlord's interest to refund the deposit.
If the landlord refunds the deposit you can still claim the compensation.
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