LL withholding deposit, refuses any communication

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    LL withholding deposit, refuses any communication


    I am having some trouble with my LL getting my deposit back. After 6 month since leaving the room I do not have my deposit nor any explanation for whats going on. I am now considering going to the small claims court. Could you please advise me whether I do have a case? If I had a case how could I go about if I do not know my LLs postal address?

    Here is the story:
    • I rented a room in a shared house in summer 2006 for an all inclusive rent of 400£ / month, however a written contract was never provided
    • I gave notice in October 2007
    • I left in November 2007, I left the key in the room as agreed with LL, LL was not present
    • In January 5 2008 I wrote a first email asking for the deposit without getting a reply
    • On January 28 I wrote a reminder, the landlady replied that she would go to check the room (which she did not seem to have done yet)
    • On February 26 I phoned her and was been told that a deduction off the deposit would be made for the phone line and cleaning the room, she promised to send me an email with details
    • The email never arrived, so last week I wrote her again. I summarized our previous conversation, set her a new deadline for payment and mentioned that I would take legal action. However so far nothing has happened, no reply from her not to mention a transfer.

    I now have a couple of questions:

    Phone line: I have not made any phone calls via landline so I do not seew hy I should be charged for this. However broadband access was included in the rent. The monthly line rental for that should therefore not come up after a year. Is this correct?

    Room cleaning: I have left the room empty and hovered as I had found it. The landlady claimed she had someone to come cleaning it and would charge me fior that. Does she have a point here particularly as she checked the room only two months later?

    Do I have a case for the small claims court here? How can I prove anything if there are no contracts and only email conversation?

    How do I go about the fact that I do not have her current address (she used to live in the house and moved out later)?

    Many thanks for your help

    1. You did have a contract, even though oral only.
    2. I imagine that you have evidence of payment of rent and deposit.
    3. So that evidence will be usable against L, if you can find her.
    4. Did L protect your deposit, as required by law (effective from April 2007)? If so, with which institution?
    5. You can download copies of HM Land Registry ownership details, for £3 from LR Online, to verify:
    a. that L still owns the property; AND
    b. her currently-registered address for service.
    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).



      thanks for you advice. I moved in in 2006 so I guess the deposit protection scheme does not apply.

      If do not find her, would it make any sense to go to the small claims court? Or could I use her work address? Or could I use her last known address?

      Many thanks


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