DPS Single Claims Process - Advice please!

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    DPS Single Claims Process - Advice please!

    Any sound advice would be much appreciated.

    I rented a property from March 2010 until March 2012.
    LL failed to provide check in inventory and thus one was never signed by myself. AST states that an inventory should have been provided.
    LL failed to provide Prescribed Information until 11/04/2012 despite numerous requests from myself. LL did not add T&C's or Scheme Leaflet to the Prescribed Information and had dated and signed it 31st March 2010. I have kept original envelope that it was posted in, which is dated 7/04/2012 (after new laws came into force) LL was given every opportunity to provide this to me prior to this date but did not.

    Property was not in the best of conditions when I moved in, but I verbally agreed with the LL that I would arrange to decorate if possible and LL offered to pay for materials for 2 of the rooms. I have correspondence via email from myself to LL stating that I had bought materials and was planning to re-decorate by Xmas 2010 - LL responded to email with no problem at all.

    LL visited property to carry out a (court ordered) inspection 3 weeks before I moved out. His wife was present and neither pointed out anything they were unhappy with. I stayed downstairs the whole time so as not to be a distraction. LL emailed after visit stating a few 'minor safety issues' he had noticed yet no mention of any damage, anything he was unhappy with etc.

    After I had moved (on agreed date) out I put keys through letter box and emailed LL to inform him that his property was vacant. He asked me to attend a check out meeting, which I declined. I asked him to document everything in writing so that we both had a record of what had been said regarding the property.

    Very long story cut short - LL and I do not get on, he is very intimidating, has visited property unannounced a few times being sleazy in front of my 5 year old and as explained, I preferred that everything be documented in writing via post or email.

    LL emailed me over a month later saying I had trashed the property and was being held responsible for a full redecoration to the tune of £1700. After I had finished laughing, I asked for a full report on his findings at the property along with a summary of costs he was claiming for, evidence proving that I was infact responsible etc. He refused to provide any of this. I emailed him again on 21st May requesting information regarding the alleged damages etc and received no reply and no report.

    My deposit is held with the DPS and today I received an email stating LL has started a single claims process to claim my entire deposit of £750 for 'damages and cleaning'. I have to reply within 14 days. I haven't damaged his property at all, but neither of us can prove the condition at the start of the tenancy.

    Can anyone give me advice on this? Obviously I am going to appeal but has anyone had dealings with this before? I understood the single claims process to be solely for use when either both parties do not agree on the deposit being returned, or one cannot be contacted?

    Also because my LL has admitted to not provided the inventory or prescribed info, does that mean the DPS rules have been broken along with the law?

    Thank you in advance for any help!

    Responsibility to prove the condition lies with the LL, not the tenant. He has to prove that you moved into an undamaged property and moved out from a damaged property. You just have to dispute his accusations. And it sounds like you have quite a few bits of evidence to suggest he didnt find any damage to the place.

    Dont know the details about DPS, but i believe all schemes use single claims processes for when the other party is not contactable. Normally the parties are asked to find a solution and then resort to some sort of arbitration, either within the scheme or the courts.
    All views posted reflect my personal opinion only and do not constitute professional advice which I am not qualified or knowledgeable enough to provide.


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