Is this a DWP system failure or just an excuse?

by Readers Question

11:47 AM, 18th September 2020
About a month ago

Is this a DWP system failure or just an excuse?

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Is this a DWP system failure or just an excuse?

To cut (an inevitably long story short!) I had a tenant who declared a change of address away from my property completely unknown to me. As a result, the Managed Payment to Landlord (MPTL) arrangement that existed for my property was cancelled on the date he reported the address change.

I only found out after no rent payment the following month later. The DWP say they are not responsible as they paid the tenant, so he owes me. Of course, he has fled, so I’m owed.

Apparently I should have then received an automated notification informing me this had happened. That’s what they are saying.

I didn’t. No communication whatsoever, despite the DWP having it all due to MPTL being established in the first place.

Is this actual process correct? Was this a ‘one off’ that I didn’t get a notification or a bigger issue – i.e. are they treating private Landlords different to other providers the DWP pay rent directly to?

Many Thanks

Reluctant Landlord


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Comments

Lindsay Keith

9:15 AM, 21st September 2020
About a month ago

1. Bad luck.
2. Get expert advice through this network and be prepared to take tough decisions.
3. If you go on your own, you will be fobbed off for ever with Covid and (misuse of) Data Protection laws deployed against you?
4. One hopes, Better Luck?

Clint

9:51 AM, 21st September 2020
About a month ago

No, this is not a one off. This is normal practice with UC where you only find out after the tenant has left and the landlord does not get paid. I have never known them to inform me when the tenant has left and in fact when I have phoned them to find out, they would not even tell me that the tenant had left as it was confidential information. They just told me to ask the tenant.

In such cases where I have had a few, I have left the usual notices for the tenant on the front door and thereafter took over the property after the notice expired.

UC is designed to have the landlord robbed in every possible way.

Old Mrs Landlord

10:51 AM, 21st September 2020
About a month ago

No, it's not a one-off - see the thread started by Mick Roberts "DWP Minister has not got a clue how Universal Credit works". It seems it is the latest scam by those claimants who serially seek out loopholes in the system which they exploit to the full, usually at landlords' expense. Just one more side-effect of locking the provider of the accommodation out of the system.

John Dace

12:24 PM, 21st September 2020
About a month ago

Shelter moans about discrimination against UC claimants. I am very unlikely to take UC claimants - not because of the tenant - but because of the system whereby the provider (us landlords) are at such massive risk. Stories like this (and worse) are common place and I simply refuse to put that noose around my neck. The sooner all landlords do the same - the sooner something might change. When it comes to a decision - it will be based on “am I going to receive the rent due regularly and reliably and without hassle” And “is it possible for any rent paid to get clawed back by DWP for some action by the tenant totally beyond my control.” And “if there is any issue with rent, can I communicate to get it resolved quickly and easily”. Currently I cannot see the correct answers to those from any UC claimant.

Tim Rogers

15:47 PM, 21st September 2020
About a month ago

I am a little behind the curve with this scenario.

But, if the DWP/UC are supposed to inform you and didn't, is it not worth while P118 members crowd funding a test case to try and set the precedent that when the DWP fail in their duty they are responsible to the landlord as they facilitated the illegal action of the tenant, ( or thoughts along those lines).
Would legal minds care to comment as to the validity of this?
The only way I can see of bringing DWP/UC into line with reality is to legally pin them down at every opportunity.

Mick Roberts

16:19 PM, 27th September 2020
About 4 weeks ago

Yes,

7 years or so later, DWP are thinking about setting up permission scheme to allow Landlords to ring in, however Housing Associations. Not Private Landlords. We will probably get it in another 7 years after another 100,000 benefit tenants have been made homeless.

Many say it on here, they ain't taking UC tenants any more cause of the system.

I & Bill Irvine have actually had 2 year complaints finally heard, found DWP guilty on all accounts, DWP admitted, this is where some Landlords have lost £7,000 in tenant spending rent & DWP keeps paying them & ICE the complaint body, just make DWP say sorry. No redress for us at all.

Clint

0:46 AM, 28th September 2020
About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Tim Rogers at 21/09/2020 - 15:47
I did suggest sometime back on one of these posts that we should consider taking legal action against DWP and Mick and I were ready to back it. Bill Irvin said he would look into it and came back saying that it appeared that a judicial review would be required where, we would require funds of around the million pound mark which, was not quite what we expected.
Perhaps Mark Smith from Cotswold Barristers may have an idea of a way forward on this.


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