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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50487
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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My uncle died a sitting tenant in 2017. I cleared house to

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My uncle died a sitting tenant in 2017. I cleared house to best of ability and time constraints. His landlord is trying to claim in excess of £5000 for clearing property, he had quoted 3 bank accounts, sort codes and contents saying he found papers in the house. He did not. I have photos and can confirm no paperwork was left in house. Is this legal?

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Has the landlord provided a breakdown of this cost at all?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
He paid bill in July 2017. Didn't claim until October. He is claiming removal of carpets, items like kitchen appliances that weren't even there and obviously threatening small claims if not paid. But I just want to understand position on bank statements as he surely shouldn't have these. I left nothing in house. He clearly knew I was acting for my mother, my late uncles sister who is unable to act due to effects of stroke and I am her PO A

OK, thank you for your response. Leave it with me for now and I will review the relevant information and laws and get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Many thanks for your patience. The position with the bank statements will very much depend on how they ended up in his possession. Looking at what has happened it will probably be difficult to establish exactly what happen d and how he came to have them, plus you will unlikely be able to obtain proof to show that. If he had deliberately gone into your uncle's possessions to find these and take them, you are looking at potential theft, but only if he had intended to permanently keep them. Also it will not really become a serious matter until he had used them for an unlawful purpose, such as for example trying to obtain money from his accounts by deception. So in all honesty, there is relatively little that can be done to challenge him over the fact he has these statements in his possession, especially as you do not know how they ended up there.

In relation to the costs for clearing, there is nothing stopping him from making a claim to pursue you for these but he will have to prove his case, specifically that he was required to clear up the flat as claimed. If you have photos proving that this would have been unnecessary that can certainly be used as a defence if needed. Do not be bullied into paying him and in some circumstances it may be better to even let him go to court, because even if you lost you would not be responsible for his legal fees as each side pays their own. There is then also a chance that he may not be successful anyway or that what he wins is less than what he had originally claimed.

I trust this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars above - this is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you still need me to clarify anything else, please reply on here and I will assist as best as I can. Thank you

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Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Thank you for you succinct and clear response to my query. So far there has been no offer to return said bank statements. You have helped me decide what I wanted which is exactly as you propose. I won't be bullied, I'm happy to go to court.
Kind regards

You are most welcome and best of luck