Landlords – The case of Gardner v McCusker (unreported), 8 May 2014, (Birmingham County Court) is the latest decision to address the scope of the rules regulating the registration of residential tenancy deposits for assured shorthold tenancies (AST’s).
The Court’s interpretation of Sections 213 – 215 of the Housing Act 2004 requires the landlord to give prescribed information to the tenants within 14 days of a deposit being taken and for the same information to be given again if a statutory periodic tenancy has rolled on immediately after the original fixed term. If the landlord has not lodged the deposit in an authorised scheme or, if the prescribed information has not been given, there may be difficulties in relying on a S21 notice requiring possession.
The implication of this, bearing in mind it is unlawful to evict a tenant without a court order, is that the Landlord is unlikely to be successful in trying to evict a tenant through the Court system; the tenants can sit tight and can even claim compensation from the landlord of up to three times the deposit for a period of up to six years from the breach.
Are you a Landlord? Are you Compliant? Call Jane Jackson for advice on your particular circumstances.