Landlord opening ex-tenant's post

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    #16
    wow a lot of legal speak lol - you wont ever get those few minutes back you know.

    1) tenant should have paid to have mail redirected

    or

    2) pay the landlord to forward the post to your new address - he aint gonna do it for free if tenant owes rent.

    don't notify the Police as they haven't got time for such pettiness

    grab a beer and chill

    Comment


      #17
      Police won't be interested - let the LL keep the cheque and ask for another to be written and sent correctly - redirect mail...simple!
      Unshackled by the chains of idle vanity, A modest manatee, that's me

      Comment


        #18
        Originally posted by Berlingogirl View Post
        It's not illegal to open somebody's letters.
        Really


        Why don't you post that comment on here https://www.royalmailchat.co.uk/community/index.php

        https://www.royalmailchat.co.uk/comm...wforum.php?f=6

        And see what they have to say ?
        Thunderbirds are go

        Comment


          #19
          Whether or not the police are interested or the action is considered de minimis, as a soon as you treat someone else's mail as your own (by for example throwing it away) it is both a crime and a tort.

          If you really think it is too much trouble to write "gone away" on a letter and drop it into a pillar box next time you're passing one, then by all means keep the letters until the tenant calls for them. Opening them cannot be justified under any circumstances. Thinking it is justified is just another instance of the control-freakery which has crept into BTL.

          Comment


            #20
            Some people should learn more respect for private property.

            Of course, the Police may not consider the matter worth dealing with. On the other hand, one should not discount the possibility that they might not take such a lenient view; perhaps they might think that stealing cheques out of the post is the sort of thing that ought to be discouraged. The sender of the cheque might reasonably refuse to send a duplicate until they were given a crime number to confirm that the first had been stolen or report it stolen themselves when they learn it has been intercepted. The Police are adept at finding something with which to charge people, if chalking the pavement is criminal damage then opening an envelope is definitely so.

            And then we have the likelihood of civil proceedings; an order for the delivery up of the cheque under the Torts (Interference With Goods) Act 1977; damages, including the reasonable costs of obtaining a replacement, any losses which flow from that interference including bank charges and so forth. Anyone who reads another's post in order to find information about that person risks proceedings for misuse of private information. Quite possibly exemplary damages in all of these cases so as to punish the tortfeasor and deter others. And then there is the matter of costs.

            In short anyone who interferes in the goods of another should not expect the law to be on their side. As lawcruncher says, either return it to sender or keep it safe.

            It is no defence that the post ought not to have been delivered to the old address; redirections are not always perfect, people send post to old addresses in error. The man on the Clapham Omnibus might reasonably think that dealing with the odd item of misdelivered post is the sort of thing that we all might expect to do, and for a landlord would be something that would be incidental to their trade.

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              #21
              The cheque could not be presented unless the payee is changed I imagine - then presumably that would be fraud in which the Police may well be interested. The sender of said cheque can avoid the chance of duplication by cancelling the original and producing another. The man or woman on the Clapham Omnibus who happens to be a Landlord may also occasionally find that their ex-tenant's post falls open in their trembling hands and that by the magic of serendipity they are able to avoid the unwelcome visitation of baliffs sent to secure payments from said ex-tenant. This is indeed a happy accident which is incidental to our trade....
              Unshackled by the chains of idle vanity, A modest manatee, that's me

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                #22
                I feel tenant should pay for mail forwarding especially if they don't get round to contacting people and doing it themselves. Especially true for tenants that leave debts, it's very annoying as well for a new tenant to keep getting mail meant for a previous person.

                Where the tenant leaves without arrears I would forward them on out of good faith but given the tenant has left debts (even if in dispute) you cannot expect much from the landlord

                The tenant should just contact the issuer of the cheque and ask for a duplicate, I don't see how the tenant not updating their address is the landlords problem especially when they left owing debts. If it was a postal order or cashiers cheque then you might be able to argue they are withholding funds but if it's a regular cheque it itself holds no value and has not been drawn yet on the source bank account.

                Always two sides to every story but moto is always update your forwarding address unlerss of course the tenant is trying to escape other debts also

                All the best

                Comment


                  #23
                  Again, some people should show more respect for private property. It does not cease to be the tenant's private property just because they left owing arrears,

                  Of course the recipient might ask for a replacement, but they are entitled if they so choose to the delivery up of the original, and the sender might reasonably refuse to send a replacement all the time that the original is unaccounted for. It is not, after all, lost. Here we have an instance of a person attempting to hold the cheque to ransom which would appear to be a pretty clear-cut crime to me.

                  If I were to send a cheque and find that it was being held to ransom I would take a dim view of my bank details and a specimen of my signature being retained by someone with no right to them. I would certainly report it to the Police. They may or may not be interested, but if you think it is acceptable to commit crimes because you might get away with it then you need to reset your moral compass, and you do of course run the risk of winding up in court, or at least being taken away in handcuffs in front of your neighbours. Would that be a happy accident?

                  As lawcruncher has pointed out, interfering with someone else's property is both a crime and a tort and it is not up to you to decide that you are justified in so doing. You may think that your excuses are reasonable, but that is not how it works.

                  Comment


                    #24
                    Originally posted by Obiter View Post
                    Again, some people should show more respect for private property. It does not cease to be the tenant's private property just because they left owing arrears,
                    When does a letter addressed to someone at the wrong address become their property?

                    When you mark a letter as "not living at this address" and put it in the postbox, the royal mail return it (via a special sorting office in Belfast, I believe) to the sender when they can find out who sent it.
                    That would indicate that the letter, at that point, doesn't belong to the intended recipient, but to the sender.
                    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                    Comment


                      #25
                      I open letters for ex-tenants. Sometimes they have no forwarding address. If it's a birthday card and there's an address in it I send it back. If it's a birthday card with a phone number in I phone them. On a few occasions there's been money in them and no senders address. If I don't hear from the tenant, always Ts who owe rent, I keep the money for 3 months then give it to charity. I'm working in the tenants best interests.

                      I open letters for ex-tenants when I see that they're from debt agencies. I phone the debt agency and tell them the T no longer lives here, I don't have a forwarding address and ask them to stop sending mail and not to pass the debt onto another agency with this address. Of course the debt gets sold on and the whole process repeats for YEARS. It doesn't matter if I PRTS - it makes no difference. One debt agency wanted me to send details of the bills and CT in my name to them - needless to say I gave them a piece of my mind! Again, I'm working in the Ts best interests.

                      I open bank statements for ex-tenants so I can see the bank's phone number and tell them the T no longer lives here and to stop posting stmts. I explain that it's a HMO and therefore has insecure data protection. The banks still send statements, for YEARS.

                      I have a letter for an ex-tenant who owes me rent. I texted him to ask for his new address as I had an important looking letter for him. He didn't give me his new address. I suspect the letter contains a cheque for a tax refund. I don't know though because I've not opened it. As he hasn't given me his new address I can only assume he doesn't want the letter and as I'm under no obligation to PRTS and owe him no favours, I'll be binning it.

                      I am not the tenant's secretary. The post has been delivered to the correct address. It's not up to me to go to the trouble of returning post, but I will willingly and happily forward post for tenants who provide me with a forwarding address.

                      If landlords are to be 'done' for not returning post, then the same 'law' must apply to homeowners who have moved house and don't PRTS or forward mail. I don't know of a single person who has been 'done' for the above 'misdemeanours'.

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Originally posted by Berlingogirl View Post
                        I open letters for ex-tenants. Sometimes they have no forwarding address. If it's a birthday card and there's an address in it I send it back. If it's a birthday card with a phone number in I phone them. On a few occasions there's been money in them and no senders address. If I don't hear from the tenant, always Ts who owe rent, I keep the money for 3 months then give it to charity. I'm working in the tenants best interests.

                        I open letters for ex-tenants when I see that they're from debt agencies. I phone the debt agency and tell them the T no longer lives here, I don't have a forwarding address and ask them to stop sending mail and not to pass the debt onto another agency with this address. Of course the debt gets sold on and the whole process repeats for YEARS. It doesn't matter if I PRTS - it makes no difference. One debt agency wanted me to send details of the bills and CT in my name to them - needless to say I gave them a piece of my mind! Again, I'm working in the Ts best interests.

                        I open bank statements for ex-tenants so I can see the bank's phone number and tell them the T no longer lives here and to stop posting stmts. I explain that it's a HMO and therefore has insecure data protection. The banks still send statements, for YEARS.

                        I have a letter for an ex-tenant who owes me rent. I texted him to ask for his new address as I had an important looking letter for him. He didn't give me his new address. I suspect the letter contains a cheque for a tax refund. I don't know though because I've not opened it. As he hasn't given me his new address I can only assume he doesn't want the letter and as I'm under no obligation to PRTS and owe him no favours, I'll be binning it.

                        I am not the tenant's secretary. The post has been delivered to the correct address. It's not up to me to go to the trouble of returning post, but I will willingly and happily forward post for tenants who provide me with a forwarding address.

                        If landlords are to be 'done' for not returning post, then the same 'law' must apply to homeowners who have moved house and don't PRTS or forward mail. I don't know of a single person who has been 'done' for the above 'misdemeanours'.
                        The fact that you can justify it to yourself, or you personally don't know anyone who has been "done" for it, doesn't make it right or legal. And you're making a rather lofty argument to vindicate someone cracking open a letter not addressed to them and extorting the ex-tenant with the contents...

                        Comment


                          #27
                          I've found that companies chasing money and sending out catalogues and so on, have reasonable procedures to deal with returned mail, and, generally stop sending things to addresses that respond - because it's just a waste of their money.
                          Binning the mail doesn't tell them anything, so they just carry on sending stuff out.

                          A few years ago, while bored, I printed several sheets of labels with "Not known at this address, return to sender" and just stick on partially over the address and put it in the post box.
                          No bother, and even a bit satisfying.

                          I found that if I don't cover the address, a number of them came back again, with my sticker on them.
                          When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                          Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                          Comment


                            #28
                            Originally posted by hybrice View Post
                            The fact that you can justify it to yourself, or you personally don't know anyone who has been "done" for it, doesn't make it right or legal. And you're making a rather lofty argument to vindicate someone cracking open a letter not addressed to them and extorting the ex-tenant with the contents...
                            I don't think anyone is suggesting that the extorting part of the OPs account is OK.
                            It's not an inevitable consequence of opening someone else's post.

                            And so far, no one's convinced me it's actually a crime or even a wrong.
                            I think people are just assuming it is.
                            When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                            Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                              When does a letter addressed to someone at the wrong address become their property?

                              When you mark a letter as "not living at this address" and put it in the postbox, the royal mail return it (via a special sorting office in Belfast, I believe) to the sender when they can find out who sent it.
                              That would indicate that the letter, at that point, doesn't belong to the intended recipient, but to the sender.
                              It is sent to the National Returns Centre only if efforts to deliver it have failed, and even then if the NRC become aware of the correct address they will deliver it. There is not a lot of case law but the starting point is that it belongs to the recipient.

                              Surely the more pertinent point is that at no time does it become the property of anyone else.

                              Comment


                                #30
                                Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                                I don't think anyone is suggesting that the extorting part of the OPs account is OK.
                                It's not an inevitable consequence of opening someone else's post.

                                And so far, no one's convinced me it's actually a crime or even a wrong.
                                I think people are just assuming it is.
                                The extortion is a serious matter. But opening someone else's post is not lawful. Taking the money out of their birthday cards and giving it away is not lawful. Reading their bank statements is not lawful. None of these items are the property of the people who are interfering with them. People may feel that they can justify it for some reason, but trespass against goods is a tort that people find themselves in court for all the time.

                                Either put it in the post box or keep it safe, it's not hard to understand.

                                And for the avoidance of doubt, that applies whether you are a homeowner, landlord or tenant.

                                Comment

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