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Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 26070
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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Background: I am 64 yeqrs old and lived last 5 years

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Background: I am 64 yeqrs old and lived for the last 5 years on the first floor in small modern block of a three story of 20 flats. Which is managed by a management company and I rent via letting agents. I live on my own,but have a close friend who has a small dog and comes with the dog to clean and if i am away check my mail etc. I have my own furniture.etc.I have never in the last 4 years had any problems and lead a "keep to myself" life,travallling to London most week days.
Incidents; On new years eve,i had a few friends over,smoking is allowed in my appartment and a few did so.The day afterwards one of the residents below me,complained to me about a pile of cigarettes outside below me ( ie outside his window on the ground floor). he was rather nasty and handed me a brush to clear it up, which i did without comment. But none of my guests would ever do such a thing and when clearing the cigarettes I found that they where not of any brand smoked andsome where cleaaly of an illigal nature. I would never and have never done such things nor would any of my frineds.
A few months later,the letter agents contacted me telling me they had a complaint that dog i had,was urinating on the outside of the building and in the hallways. The letting agents came over and i told them I would NEVER have any dog do such things and if my friend has a dog here he would never allow it and the agents saw no evidence in my hallway ( cummunial ) of any marks at all. My home is in prestine condition they all agreed.
A month later I found all my personal rubbish in the outside had been gone through and thrown out over the main enterance hall ( only my rubbish ). I took a picture and advised the letting agents.
i went to London last wednesday and returned on Sunday, I took with me my friend as he wanted to see his father. Both of us returned together on Sunday evening. Yesterday, i received an email from the letting agents informing me that there had been an incident at my premises on the friday/ Saturday night. Since I had been away I had no knowledge of this,so I went over to them immediatly. The agent said that there had been a compliant from the Management Company,that at 3am in the morning two youths where fighting outside my appartment in the cummunial hallway and in the private car park. the police had been called and the police had knocked on my appartment door No 11 and entered and that my friend ( the one with the dog) had been seen getting out of a taxi with these youths and that an oldman was seen ( but not me) The letting agents said that this is what she had been told and what was in the police report.The letting agent said she had spoken to the owner of the property and that this was my final warning. She said that if i was told to leave i would not be renting again as this would be put on my file. I told her that i was not even in the City on those dates and nither was my friend and was horrified. I went to the police station and asked them about the incident. The police would not tell me much but they did look up the incident and told me very clearly that on the police report and or statements,there was NO mention of No 11 ( my flat) nd that no officer had knocked or enterered my prmises and my name was NOT mentioned at all in any of this.
I told the letting agents this and they seemed to accept it up to a point,I rang the management company and they said they would look at this and where infact very nice. They told me that they had been telephoned about this by one of the residents,who claimed he had seen the youths arrive and my friend and that it was outside my flat,which is odd as his flat is on the bottom of the block and on the other side. I told them I can prove that both myself and my friend where away ( hotel and rail receipts ).I do not associate with youths.
I should perhaps mention that the resident of the ground floor flat that looks out inot the private car park is how can one say,very interested in all that goes on.Not a very pleasant man. How on earth he would know what went on or not, a floor or two above him is a mystery.
My concern is that the letting agents will hold this incident against me in their files and this could well in the future make any other move or letting impossible and that going around saying that I was nothing to do woth this,is horrible and a slur on my name.It really now all upsets me. I did not sleep at all last night.
What can I write to the letting agents and to the management company about this? I suspect that one of the tennants below me has it in for me,the reason I do not know,but I feel very harrased. The letting agents surly can not keep wrong information about me in their files which would cause me huge problems in the future. My rent has always been paid on time and i think I must be a perfect tennant,but this type of slander (?) and continual false statements and stuff is very unpleasant and worrying.
I really appreciate your help.
Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 10 years experience. I am sorry to hear of these circumstances. Am I right in understanding from what you say that you know for certain or are faily sure that the issues are being reported by the chap downstairs from you please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I am fairly sure. But since he has an apartment that over looks the entrance and main car park and sometimes acts like a head teacher even through he has no role at all.He would have been able to see such fight. But his flat is a floor below me and to the far side of the building. So in any case he would not have heared anything from my flat

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

He is, through one hates to say it a bit of a busy body.

Thank you. This is a difficult situation because of the level of his behaviour. His actions may amount to harrassment - harassment is any course of behaviour either designed to or the result of which is intimidation or causing a third party distress. However if it is, it is very low level behaviour and unlikely to interest the police. It is possible to seek an injunction against harrassment but obtaining evidence that he made such reports might be difficult and even then it is a case of his word against yours to some extent save for items you can prove are untrue such as the police report. Accordingly there do not appear to be any obvious worthwhile bases for action directly against the neighbour as things stand. You could purchase a CCTV camera which are very cheap and set it to record incidents around your flat though windows if you felt this would add a degree of certainy to accounts but it probabluy would not add a lot. The main issue apart from the slight degree of unpleasantness with the neighbour is the harm on relations with your letting agents and / or management company. The management company is less of an issue as their primary relationship is with the landlord. However in terms of the lettings agents, you might like to ask for a meeting with the manager to discuss the issue in order that you can express your concerns. In the assumption you can address the various issues they have raised and have them understand that the reports appear to be either negligent or deliberately designed to harass this should stem issues to some extent. However ultimately the lettings agents may not make claims against you that are untrue nd if they do so in any reference which causes you financial loss - e.g. to lose another rental property - they can be financially liable to you for loss. I would not recommend an approach of all und blazing threatening a claim in the county court but at any such meeting such as the above you could express a more gentle view that you are concerned as to the accuracy of any information the lettings agents have recorded about you in particular as to any information they provide in the form of a reference or generally to third parties reminding them that they have a duty to ensure that such information is accurate. You also have a right to request a copy of all information they hold about you on their file. If the outcome of that meeting is unsatisfactory one approach could be to vote with your feet and look for another property which youmight be happoer with. There is little point in battling with lettings agents causing yourself stress with limited positive outcomes and you could say to the lettings agent that if they are not willing to support or at least accept your position you are prepared to look at moving and locating an alternative property but on the basis you consider yourself to be a very good tenant paying rent on time and complying with the provisions of your tenancy you would hope that they would support you in the event of any further incidents particular as you can prove that at least a number of the reports are conclusively false. If you do find that the agents provide a reference which contains information you can show is false you can if necessary issue a claim against them in the county court for any financial loss you suffer as a result using the following form: Have I been able to help you with all your questions on the above?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you. what would you suggest I say in a letter asking them site of what they hold in their files on me and just as important pointing out to them that they are wrong ! and a) I could not have been in two places at once ie I was not at the property. b) the police have no record at all of calling at my flat or the incident being related to me or any of my friends.

In these circumstances as above I might be tempted to ask for a meeting - it is not necessary but often meeting face to face will put a human face to what are otherwise faceless letters and emails which can quickly become confrontational which I cannot see is to your advantage here.However in respect of your specific question you have a right to see all the information they hold on you under the Data Protection Act. If you want to request a copy of this information you will need to either ask them informally or submit a subject access request. This can take the following form - they are entitled to charge a fee not exceeding £10 to supply the information required. If they not reply within 40 days they are liable to a fine:Dear SirsSubject access request[Your full name and address and any other details to help identify you and the information you want.]Please supply the information about me I am entitled to under the Data Protection Act 1998 relating to: [give specific details of the information you want, for exampleyour personnel file;emails between ‘A’ and ‘B’ (between 1/6/11 and 1/9/11);copies of statements (between 2006 & 2009) held in account number xxxxx).]If you need any more information from me, or a fee, please let me know as soon as possible.It may be helpful for you to know that a request for information under the Data Protection Act 1998 should be responded to within 40 days.If you need advice on dealing with this request, the Information Commissioner’s Office can assist you and can be contacted on 0303(###) ###-####or at faithfully Can I help you with anything else or has the above answered your questions satisfactorily?
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