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propertylawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 288
Experience:  Property Solicitor with expertise in commercial and residential property transactions.
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In February 2015 I signed a contract and paid a deposit for

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In February 2015 I signed a contract and paid a deposit for a student house with the idea to move in in July/August time which the landlord was fine with. I moved into the house and found promise after promise broken by the landlord that at the end I asked the landlord to terminate the contract, which he agreed (august 24th). However, I learnt afterwards that my deposit was not protected at that time and after a year of asking him to return it he still refuses. Am I able to have the deposit back or am i out of luck / too late for the deposit to be returned? If I am able to get the deposit back, what routes should I take?

Under contract law you have 6 years to bring a claim.

If the landlord failed to register your deposit you can bring an action against the landlord for an award of between 1 to 3 times the value of the deposit.

As to the return of the original deposit, you can claim for this to be returned as well.

Do you have any questions or queries? I am happy to assist further?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
if I decide to make a claim, what would the process be towards making this claim?
Also because the contract was ended mutually, and I do decide to make a claim, could he then turn around and try to obtain remaining rent from the contract, or would a judge(or whatever route I go) appose this and say this is not allowed

If the claim is for the deposit, you are entitled to its return regardless of how the tenancy ended. This is because the landlord failed to register it with a deposit scheme.

If the landlord counterclaimed for the rent, your defence is that you both mutually agreed to end the tenancy (do you have anything in writing confirming this??).

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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