Deposit dispute- invented damages charges

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    Deposit dispute- invented damages charges

    Hello All,

    An old but a goodie, I imagine.

    Basically, my wife and I were lodging privately (in England) with another couple.

    After 3 (uncomfortable) months, we recently left, and they charged us for a damage (+ labour) for something we simply did not do. In fact, I doubt that the item was actually damaged at all, by anyone.

    What can I do? Can I ask for receipts/ photos/ other evidence?

    We treated both them and the property with the utmost respect and care, and we're really angry.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. MrD.

    #2
    Did the landlord live with you in the property? The reason I ask is to determine if you were a real lodger or if the landlord did not live in the property an actual legally protected tenant

    How much is the deposit worth?

    Comment


      #3
      Also, into what documentation did L and you enter?
      Any formal Agreement governs each party's rights and responsibilities (whether you are a true tenant or only a lodger).
      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).

      Comment


        #4
        We lived in the property with LL and their partner, and signed a lodger's agreement.

        The deposit was 1 month's rent, most of which has been returned, apart from these damage charges.

        Actually, the LL claims the damage was made by my wife, and reported to her partner just after it was done (some 6 weeks ago, allegedly). Nothing about this was mentioned to me until today, basically because it's pure fabrication!

        Thanks, guys, for any help.

        Comment


          #5
          So which clause of the Agreement are you supposed to have broken and what evidence of breach does L have?
          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).

          Comment


            #6
            How much is the disputed amount for damage?

            Comment


              #7
              Don't have the agreement with me at the moment- will quote it later.

              Disputed damage is for £100: £25 parts cost + £75 engineer call out and fitting. A suspiciously round figure, if you ask me.

              As I said, as of yet, no receipts/invoices have been provided (or asked for).

              Actually, I will probably also dispute the damage I did do, as it seems a too high a figure for what is was.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by MrDisgruntled View Post

                Disputed damage is for £100: £25 parts cost + £75 engineer call out and fitting. A suspiciously round figure, if you ask me.
                For what? sorry be blunt but if you want us to help you, you need to be more specific

                Comment


                  #9
                  Sorry if I'm coy, I don't want give away too many details, as you never know who's reading. . .

                  But, anyway, part of a fridge-freezer. The bottom part of it, which was allegedly stood on, bent and buckled. But, as I said, I doubt the damage was done, and certainly not by my partner or myself.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    OK, got the Agreement, and here's the relevant clause (exactly as printed):

                    "F. The lodger understands that it is his/her responsibility to pay for any damage s to do with to equipment, fixtures and fittings and that in such event, moneys for their replacement or rectification will be deducted from their deposit and they may be asked to leave forthwith. Should the damage exceed this amount they will also be liable for additional costs."

                    As for evidence, I haven't seen (or yet asked for) proof of receipts/ invoices or photos of said damage. I expect they may not appear, as I'm pretty certain it's a fabrication.

                    OK, guys. Do you need any more info? Does any know of any relevant info? Any advice how to proceed?

                    At the moment I'm waiting to see if the promised amount clears in my account before I make any more correspondence: just in case it hasn't actually been transfered as stated.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Deposit Dispute-fabricated damages

                      Hello All,

                      We’ll try again: this time I’ve hopefully got all the relevant info all together.

                      Basically, my wife and I were lodging privately (in England), living in the property with LL and their partner. After 3 (uncomfortable) months, we recently left, and they charged us for a damage (+ labour) for something we simply did not do.

                      We signed a lodger's agreement and deposit was 1 month's rent, most of which has been promised to be returned, (I’m still waiting for the bank transfer to come through) apart from these damage charges.

                      The LL claims the damage was made by my wife, and reported to her partner just after it was done (some 6 weeks ago): the bottom part of a fridge-freezer was allegedly stood on, bent and buckled, costing £100: £25 parts cost + £75 engineer call out and fitting.

                      In fact, I doubt that the item was actually damaged at all, by anyone.

                      The relevant clause in the Agreement is as follows:
                      “F. The lodger understands that it is his/her responsibility to pay for any damage s to do with to equipment, fixtures and fittings and that in such event, moneys for their replacement or rectification will be deducted from their deposit and they may be asked to leave forthwith. Should the damage exceed this amount they will also be liable for additional costs."

                      As for evidence, I haven't seen (or yet asked for) proof of receipts/ invoices or photos of said damage. I expect they may not appear, as I'm pretty certain it's a fabrication.

                      At the moment I'm waiting to see if the promised amount clears in my account before I make any more correspondence: just in case it hasn't actually been transferred as stated.

                      We treated both them and the property with the utmost respect and care, and we're really angry. What can I do? It’s just not fair that they walk away with £100 of my money just because they feel like it, or because they can.

                      Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. MrD.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by MrDisgruntled View Post
                        We treated both them and the property with the utmost respect and care, and we're really angry. What can I do? It’s just not fair that they walk away with £100 of my money just because they feel like it, or because they can.
                        All you can do is issue a county court claim via Money Claim Online.

                        The court fee would be £25, the allocation fee £35, and the hearing fee £25; nearly as much as your claim, but these fees would be added to the claim.

                        Comment

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