Superstrike rules clarity required for 3 times 3 penalty?

by Readers Question

13:39 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Superstrike rules clarity required for 3 times 3 penalty?

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Superstrike rules clarity required for 3 times 3 penalty?

Hi All,

Looking for some advice….

We (married couple) have been Tenants since 2nd Feb 13 on a 6 month fixed term AST
On 2nd Aug 13 we signed another 6 month FT AST
On 2nd Feb 14 we signed another 6 month FT AST.

Recently due to repairs not being done, gas certificate not being provided, EPC report not provided etc. we sent an email to the Landlord on 6/3/14 highlighting all the issues and included a request for the reference number for our deposit scheme.

The Landlord had not (confirmed proof) protected our deposit of £550.00 until they had received our email on 6/3/14.

On 6/3/14 the Landlord protected our deposit On 10/3/14

I have read the Superstrike case and am confused…. I have been told that each of the tenancies was a ‘new’ FT Tenancy so it would be classed if court proceedings were issued as 3x 1-3x Penalty.
Others have told me that it would be one case (1x) 1-3x Penalty.

My question who is right?

Many thanks

Red3x3


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Comments

Neil Patterson

13:41 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

A very good question and not one were are sure there is an actual answer for yet.

Other reader's opinion is welcome but we think it is likely to be one penalty of 3 times.

Leanne Frisby

13:59 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Many thanks for posting my question.

Hopefully someone can help.

I have no idea how much to claim or how to claim it.
Bottom line is that if my LL cared enough about us as tenants (with 3 small children) he would have fulfilled his obligations as a LL and I wouldn't even be looking into this.

Romain Garcin

14:32 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

In the statute, all the procedures regarding deposit protection, including the penalty relate to a deposit that was "received in relation to an AST".
Superstrike clarified that, even if not explicitly stated by the parties, the deposit was received in relation to a replacement AST when that tenancy was created.

A such, the strict interpretation of the law is that the landlord is liable for a penalty separately for each tenancy for which he was in breach.

Roy and Tania

14:36 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

It's a grey area whether Superstrike will help you as it related specifically to an AST (signed before the Deposit regs becoming statutory) that ultimately moved into a periodic tenancy (whereupon the regs applied).

The bottom line is that your deposit is now protected. This also gives your LL a strong claim to a repossession order if he so wished and one that you would not be able to use Superstrike to protect yourself from. You would however have evidence that the deposit was not initially protected within 30 days of the tenancy commencing and obviously no PI or leaflet explaining the scheme etc was served either.

So now you have rocked his boat and might receive a s21 notice to quit for your efforts. A s21 might fail if dates are invalid - a common mistake. You would need a strong barrister to assist you if you were relying on failure to protect the deposit.

Regards the 3x penalty. Its up to a max of 3x but rarely granted. It certainly would not accrue for each failure to protect the deposit, unless you had a judge who was a bit soft in the head.

We started our own action for disrepair last Autumn. That invoked a retaliatory accelerated repossession claim by our LL. We successfully defended that as a result of deposit being protected late and were offered considerable damages and full costs in respect of our disrepair claim. It is not for the faint-hearted and will cost you a considerable sum to get to court.

DC

14:44 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

A good question, which only a Court of Law can give a decision on as the circumstances of Superstrike relates to a pre 2007 deposit protection AST, which then switched to a periodic tenancy after the law change but your tenancy agreements neither commenced prior to the 2007 law change or rolled into an SPT.

Despite some previous discussions and opinions to the contrary on this site Superstrike has not clarified the position at all in my opinion and only a case such as yours may start to make matters more clear, although that would only be in respect of renewing AST's and not an AST rolling into a SPT.

So the answer could be either of your suggested options i.e 1x3 deposit fine or possibly even a 3x3 fine.

If you do decide to take this matter to Court would you please keep us informed via this site?

Sue P

15:01 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Forgetting the lure of ‘superstrike’ and the ££££ in front of your eyes for a moment, morally why would you want to try to squeeze nine times your deposit from your landlord?

If you were having problems with repairs why did you re-sign the tenancy agreement – twice?
You say you did not see an EPC. The idea of an EPC is that you see it BEFORE you sign so that you can compare properties prior to making your decision. If you happily made the decision to rent the property without an EPC then why make a song and dance about it now, more than 12 months on?
I know that these bits of paper need to be provided and I know the reasons why, and indeed as a good landlord I provide everything needed/required in good time. It seems that you were happy to go ahead without the EPC etc. and now are looking to make a quick buck.

No doubt there is more to this than meets the eye - for both tenant and landlord

Leanne Frisby

15:12 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Romain " at "17/03/2014 - 14:32":

Thank you Romain for your advice

Leanne Frisby

15:14 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "DC " at "17/03/2014 - 14:44":

I will keep this site informed - many thanks for your comments.

I too am confused right now.

Leanne Frisby

15:30 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Sue P" at "17/03/2014 - 15:01":

Are you suggesting that I have no morals for claiming something the courts have decided should be a penalty????
Surely that is a personal attack that is totally unfounded!

I am purely asking which penalty I should apply for, as this is a 'grey area' for a lot of people including me as a 'mere' tenant.

I resigned the tenancy agreement two times after the initial tenancy as being a reasonable person I was giving my LL chance to do the repairs and after 13 months where NOTHING AT ALL was done for us I finally had enough!
I did NOT know about the EPC and was not informed by the LL that this was needed.

The bottom line is - It was the Landlords responsibility to produce all the paperwork - not mine! They assured me they had all the paperwork and kept making excuses when I asked for the paperwork including the gas certificate. As for the numerous repairs and LL promises - I spent 13 MONTHS giving the LL chance to rectify this situation which they chose to not do - do I not then have a right to Claim - Morally!

Where are the LL's morals??? Did the LL have morals when he took my money each month and never provided even a basic level of care to his tenant!

I have been a MODEL TENANT - Rent even now is up to date and the house is in the same (if not better) condition as it was when we signed the first tenancy.

Please don't post if you want to personally attack me as you obviously have nothing useful to advise about the actual question I asked.

Romain Garcin

15:35 PM, 17th March 2014
About 7 years ago

Red, it seems that you asked the same question one week ago on another landlord forum. You already got a lot of considerate replies over there.

Not sure what exactly you are after...

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