Deposit recovery after vexatious bullying claim and no address?

Deposit recovery after vexatious bullying claim and no address?

9:05 AM, 6th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago 45

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A tenant of mine left my flat with about £7,000 rent arrears: £6,300 during the tenancy and another £750 or so after refusing to vacate, and only leaving after a possession order hearing date had been given.

I have a £5,000 CCJ, which he is required to pay £200 per month.

I’m trying to reclaim his £1,265 deposit, but he is contesting this saying that I bullied him to leave before getting a possession order by threatening him with court action (!) if he didn’t leave.

He is refusing mediation, and the deposit company say I can only recover the deposit with a court order. Unfortunately, I don’t have an address for him.

How can I get a court order to recover my money without an address for him?

Many thanks

Tom



Comments

by Ian Narbeth

9:12 AM, 7th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by wanda wang at 06/01/2022 - 21:44
Wanda, your comment does not help Tom.
Seething Landlord, thank you for that information.
Tom, have you prepared a statutory declaration relating to the rent arrears? If not do so and submit it to the DPS and send a copy of the CCJ. If the tenant disputes it he will probably have to perjure himself.

by Chris Novice Shark Bait

12:42 PM, 7th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by James T at 06/01/2022 - 23:09Hi James, I am open to correction. Every e-mail I receive from the DPS no reply service states at the bottom. Computershare Investor Services PLC is authorised and registered by the FCA. but only if you print out the e-mail, otherwise their is a twitter link which I assume says the same, though I have never felt the need to use such a link. I am not on twitter.
Having pressed them yesterday during an uninvited telephone call which they made to me it was sated that:
The Deposit Protection Service (The DPS), which is a trading name of Computershare Investor Services PLC (CIS PLC), was appointed to provide its services by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC).
"The DPS doesn’t undertake any activities that are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). However, because CIS PLC is an FCA authorised and regulated firm, we treat all our customers equally and fairly irrespective of whether they use our regulated or non-regulated services. Therefore, we apply the same standards to our complaint procedures as we do for our regulated services". So we each have to draw our conclusions. The point is, that being unsatisfied with the "Complaint Officer's" response their appears to be no other authority to whom we can escalate our complaint, which strikes me as plain wrong.
I take issue with that officious title.
All I know is that I have wasted time an energy to try and get them see reason but they appear robotic and clearly appear to be following computer generated responses which only answer 40% of my complaint, end off. I do not know what to make of this but it is infuriating. Am I missing something?

by James T

15:05 PM, 7th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris Novice Shark Bait at 07/01/2022 - 12:42Interesting. Sounds unlikely, but might be worth checking if the Financial Ombudsman are somehow competent to escalate a complaint to and provide some sort of adjudication (binding or otherwise).
Failing that, your MP?

by Royston Olner

8:56 AM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris Novice Shark Bait at 06/01/2022 - 12:07
Hi, I have 8 let properties all with rents secured at DPS.
Like you, I've 2 outstanding cases where the tenant left owing rent & utility costs.
On both occasions the tenant tells you, that you can have the deposit. But obviously does Nothing to help me recover these sums.
I have been busy with other matters, but would like to resolve these outstanding issues.
To give me over £1,000 but also. A clean paperwork file.
I have proof of all the arrears.
Any advice you could offer would be most helpful.
Thanks Royston

by Seething Landlord

9:16 AM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Royston Olner at 08/01/2022 - 08:56
You simply need to follow the procedure set out in the DPS terms and conditions.

by Seething Landlord

10:55 AM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris Novice Shark Bait at 06/01/2022 - 12:07
Without knowing the nature of your complaint it is impossible to comment but to suggest that the DPS do not understand the nature of letting is probably inaccurate. Could it be perhaps that you do not understand the nature of deposit protection?

by Chris Novice Shark Bait

12:07 PM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Seething Landlord at 08/01/2022 - 10:55
Nice try, but no. It is possible that my tenant lacked understanding which I tried to explain. This resulted in us becoming irritated with each other after 10 years. He has lived at the same property for 14yrs, I bought the place with him as a sitting tenant. He has changed his e-mail address several times and his mobile number also. I was not allowed to update his new contact details, he had to do it. He spoke to them and e-mailed them. They would not accept his e-mail because it was from a new address etc. I wanted to register a new AST which I did. It required a small top up to the deposit held. As all will know we have to submit the new deposit within 30 days. I tried on line to have the original deposit transferred to the new AST and the tenant would pay me the top up which I would then deposit with them. This was not possible on line so I rang them. It is not possible in any event. OK tedious so I requested the old deposit to be returned to me. My tenant agreed with me and notified the DPS directly by a phone call and an e-mail (from his new e- mail address. This was not accepted. They asked for a copy of the new AST and for reasons not yet explained in correspondence this was not accepted either. In the mean time the DPS were chasing me for funds for the new deposit etc. They never joined up the dots even after repeated e-mails from me which they do accept. Upshot was I cancelled the new deposit registration electing to run without one.
My tenant has £3,100 arrears because of covid and no fault of his own but I have supported him and his family through this with a possible repayment plan in place, but not guaranteed.
Eventually the complaints officer spoke to my tenant and paid the old deposit to him, and not me. It gets even more weird if I add the extra details.
What I do not understand is whether or not the DPS aree regulated in any capacity when they get things so wrong. My tenant has lived at the same address for 14 years and his landline number has never changed. The DPS could not be bothered to write to him or ring him on his landline. They have ignored this part of my complaint. What they did do is recruit my services to advise my tenant what he must do, but that was causing issues between us which we both wanted to avoid etc.

by Seething Landlord

13:09 PM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris Novice Shark Bait at 08/01/2022 - 12:07It sounds as though you were attempting to do something that made sense to you but was not catered for by the DPS.

Where it gets complicated is their repayment of the deposit to the tenant without your agreement. Did you and they comply with the requirements of clauses 15 to 18?

by Windsor Woman

18:16 PM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Like some of the other posters, I am with DPS but I'm not a fan. I have no experience of other deposit providers, so If anyone can recommend the alternatives, I’d love to hear.

Having sought guidance from DPS on various occasions, I find it is inconsistent and differs according to the call handler you speak to and their respective levels of experience. I don’t think they are well trained, and much of the time they say you need to get advice from a solicitor. If tenants are similarly receiving poor advice, that leads to an unhelpful situation for everyone.

I currently have a problem with a DPS deposit where the proposed charges are fully justified with evidence, but the tenants object to some of them, despite having previously agreed them in writing. However they are now backtracking, haven’t bothered to provide any evidence (which I know they don’t have), but have still escalated to a dispute and are threatening me with court action!

Interestingly, my inventory clerk mentioned that increasingly they see tenants just playing the deposit system for as long as they can, just to wear down the landlord so they give up and settle, as its all too much hassle to pursue.

by Seething Landlord

18:26 PM, 8th January 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Windsor Woman at 08/01/2022 - 18:16
The DPS are not there to provide legal advice or guidance, their role is to protect the deposit by holding it in trust for the tenant until such time that the landlord proves that on the balance of probabilities all or part of it should be released to him.

I maintain that the DPS custodial scheme provides excellent value for money.


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