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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 18744
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I am due to leave my flat in June and all paid up Due to

Customer Question

JA: Hi. How can I help?
Customer: I am due to leave my flat in June and all paid up Due to covid I am stuck in France and have asked my friends to collect my stuff. I have posted the key to return to the landllady, however die to covid the keys are taking along time to go through check and deliverd in the UK. The landlady will not allow me to collect my stuff without returning the key first. I have no contract when I agreed to stay.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: So I work in the UK and the flat I am talking about is in the UK.
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: Called and asked to agree a time to have my friends collect my stuff.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon. I will assist with your question - be aware this is an email not chat service.

so where are the keys now?

were you renting a room as a lodger or a seperate flat?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The Keys are with me in France as this is where my parents live and the flat is in Brentford, Middlesex. I am renting a room as a lodger.
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

You can send the key by DHL and it will arrive overnight. The cost is about GBP30.

Otherwise you could send by international signed for and it would probably take about 5-10 days.

I have ordered stuff from Holland and Germany recently and it has arrived within a week. Stuff from China has only taken 10 days.

So that solves the key problem. If you are asking what you can do about getting your belongings back in the interim, you can’t beat the landlady with a stick until she allows your friends to remove your property and your only remedy would be to take her to court. It’s going to be much quicker to send the keys. And cheaper.

Can I clarify anything else for you?

I am happy to answer any specific points arising from this.

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Thank you.

If you still need any points clarifying, I will still reply because the thread does not close.

Best wishes.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the reponse.
The Key has been sent by a speical delivery service and its status shows it been in the UK but not senr on for delivery, when I have questioned this, its because of COVID.
My friends have kindly offered to help out and priovide her dates 10 days ago and last min she says I cannot have my stuff picked up without the key.
Now she says this is beacase this is what her agent has advised her, however I have had no contract provided when I moved in and after paying a deposit. I have no issue giving ehr the key, but cannot help feel she is being difficult and I know she is sub letting and there is no agent!
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Thank you.

In your previous reply you said “the Keys are with me in France”. You did not say you had already sent them.

The Postal Service has gone haywire the problem for you is that you cannot beat her with a blunt instrument until she capitulates and let your colleagues have your belongings and your only remedy is court and that could take weeks.

I wish I could give you a magic answer quite simply, there is not one.