Any Landlords Wrongly / Unfairly Reported to Environmental Heath

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    Any Landlords Wrongly / Unfairly Reported to Environmental Heath

    Just wondering if any Landlords have threatened to sue tenants for defamation?

    Tenants didn't want to leave and 6 weeks after they should have left, made incredible allegations to environmental health. They also sent a letter to the court stating revenge eviction and that the environmental health were due to inspect the property etc.

    EH knew tenants were playing games but had to do their job. I was sent a report that basically confirms the house is in excellent order with no evidence of damp and or mould etc etc. EH also telephoned me and said, you have a problem, The Husband doesn't want to leave!

    Tenants have now upped sticks and gone and didn't give me any notice at all. They are of the opinion I should give them a full refund.

    I have court fees to recover plus other costs.

    What would you do if your tenants made-up serious allegations about you and the property, lied in black and white, to the courts and EH (thankfully lies disproven). Would you happily hand-over a full refund?

    I feel too many tenants really take the p when they have had an excellent home, at a favourable rent, and house always maintained promptly and professionally etc.

    Would you just refund full deposit and just hope Karma catches up with them. Would you threaten to sue for defamation (not that I would actually waste my time on that).


    #2
    If they should have left, why please? Their notice or court order?

    I'd be hy to them go, the way you describe them, with or without notice.

    I was once written to by EH about condensation & mould. Always careful to speak promptly and politely to council. On inspection it turned out they put in gas heater with huge gas cylinder and kept all windows and vents firmly closed. The matter them dropped. But one of tenants most unpleasant, ending up in court for chasing his boyfriend down road with a sword, them late being made bankrupt by council over more than £15k council tax unpaid.

    Good luck.
    I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

    Comment


      #3
      I had a T who called EH, as I served notice on them, they found nothing wrong, it went to Court for possession, T still didn't leave, had to go to final stage Bailiffs to kick T out. The place was trashed, £8k to put it back again. I would never give a T a full refund unless the property was returned in the same condition as give when they moved in. You would only be encouraging bad T's to play this con on the next LL. See your possession through and get CCJ against T. Forget about the liable issue, you would only be throwing more money to a lawyer for no real justice.

      If the T has a job you are more likely to recover your costs and any damages, if they are not working the best you can achieve is a CCJ against them to warn other LL's.

      Comment


        #4
        So even though they have now vacated, continue with the possession order?

        I am hoping to meet and talk with tenants tomorrow.

        At the very least, I will be deducting court costs and some damages. I have no intention of going down the court route for defamation - I just want to threaten it!

        Comment


          #5
          I don't think defamation law covers this sort of thing no matter how false -- like a false or mistaken accusation to the police which is privileged see Westcott v Westcott [2008] EWCA Civ 818 -- though not sure it would need separate case law for every possible complaint recipient.

          Comment


            #6
            They've given you no notice so there's a deposit deduction to add to court and other costs - add interest too.

            Comment


              #7
              I would forget more about defamation and concentrate more on perjury if you have hard evidence that they lied to the court. And yes, I would continue with the possession claim in order to tie up a loose end.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by MW1985 View Post
                I would forget more about defamation and concentrate more on perjury if you have hard evidence that they lied to the court. And yes, I would continue with the possession claim in order to tie up a loose end.
                Thank you. I hadn't thought of perjury, but yes, they have deliberately lied to both the Courts and EH. I do have hard evidence which proves the lies.

                For the moment, I still have their deposit. I guess the next step is to send a letter outlining deductions and enclose cheque for the difference?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Is the deposit protected? If so, use their format for deductions. If T disputes it you can either go to court or use the protection schemes dispute resolution service.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Yes, Deposit is protected. I shall have a look at the format. Tenants have offered me some money for damages but no notice and they are also refusing the court costs.

                    I will use the format, send them a covering letter and a cheque offering them to accept and bank the cheque. If they do not accept, we can go to arbitration.

                    I find it incredible that a tenants can say to me aggressively, 'you will have to evict us, we are going to wait here until we are evicted by the courts'. How can they expect to dodge the legal fees!

                    Time to exit being a landlord. Any Government Bod's reading this thread - thanks, the way you are treating Landlords is making a bad situation (housing shortage) far worse.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      That truly is the government's aim - to force out the little man and make the housing market part of the corporate structure. IT's truly obvious if you look at the new regulations brought in - it's discouragement to the mom and pop operations.

                      I would not send a cheque to be honest. I would send the tenants their cover letter with proof of a bank transfer. Make sure you follow your deposit scheme's template step by step though as you really don't want the tenants being stirred up and wanting to go to arbitration.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Don't think this bunch of clowns is sufficiently well staffed or organised to know what they're doing in this area, or have a plan at all.
                        I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

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