Does the deposit have to be physically returned ?

by Readers Question

8:22 AM, 31st July 2017
About 3 years ago

Does the deposit have to be physically returned ?

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Does the deposit have to be physically returned ?

I have a tenant in arrears.

The deposit was unprotected (i.e. not re-protected at renewal due to an admin error)

I offered the tenant the chance to use the deposit against the arrears, we agreed and he signed a letter stating the deposit had been returned. (This was around 2 years ago)

We are in court next week for a possession hearing.

Any advice ?



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Luke P

10:22 AM, 31st July 2017
About 3 years ago

The only think that matters is what can be evidenced. It seems you can 'evidence' the deposit's return...whether that actually happened or not is, as far as the Court is concerned, immaterial, I would suggest.

Seething Landlord

20:31 PM, 31st July 2017
About 3 years ago

There's a danger that the tenant will claim compensation for your failure to protect the deposit but apart from that I would agree that setting it off against arrears to its value was effectively the same as physically returning it.

Chris @ Possession Friend

10:39 AM, 1st August 2017
About 3 years ago

There is a possibility that the court will not consider the deposit returned 'unconditionally' - but it will be interesting to know the court result. - in so far as the possession is concerned.
The point about liability for a fine of between 1 - 3 x deposit stands as a possibility for up to 6 years after the deposit was paid regardless of the deposit's return..

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