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DPS - what happens next?


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Quick summary of the situation -

deposit protected with DPS.

End of tenancy - we requested £270 to be withheld, to cover plumbing costs and redecoration of ceiling.

Tenants have lost their unique id number (we found all paperwork associated with the tenancy dumped in the bin), so the process has started all over again.

DPS has written to the tenants 3 times now, stating that they need to have a statutory declaration witnessed by solicitors or similar...no response.

What happens now?

I've tried to understand the DPS terms and conditions, but got lost very quickly - to me,it reads as though the disputed amount will be turned over to us automatically if the tenants continue to ignore requests from the DPs. Is that the case?

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Hi Tracey

I have only ever claimed the whole of deposit , for rent arrears ,not done part deposit claim.

When I need to reclaim deposit I simply iniciate the single claim process, this involves requesting the single cliam form, its sent to you, fill in and you then need to get solicitor to witness (costs around £5 depending on solicitor)

I then send that back to DPS with proof of arrears.

I don't state damages as in my experience the DPS favour tenant on this, and normally they are in arrears more than the deposit

DPS try to contact tenant,seeing as in my cases the tenant has dissappered and changed their mobiles DPS don't usually manage to contact them.

They also write to the last known adress(which is your property)If you have forward address, phone numbers or emails you must provide these to the DPS.If no reply by tenants 14 working days the DPS pay you directly.

It can sometimes take a while but follow the single claim procedure and eventually you will get it back .

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I've only made claim on a part deposit once.

The T rolled and I received no problem, this was a couple of months after the T had departed and were pestering me for their deposit. I just said that I don't have it, true, and that it's with the DPS. It was then that I raised the claim with the DPS.

I view that as the T's are given all the required paperwork and references at the start of tenancy (well within 14 days) and I include the references on all statements. As it's their money they wish returned it's their problem.

I think we have done enough administrating of the deposit at the start and if they can't organise their paperwork and inform the DPS of updated contact info tough.

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Thanks Julles.

Our LA is dealing with this and has been in telephone contact with the DPs, which is how I know that the tenants aren't responding.

From what he said (LA), the DPS are waiting on the tenants to have THEIR side of the single claim process witnessed - does that sound correct?

I am slightly concerned because our LA has never had to deal with this before - although he is keeping in close contact with the DPS to make sure he's doing everything correctly on our behalf.

The tenants left a forwarding address (although it was different from the post-tenancy address given on the tenancy agreement - could this be the problem?)

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Tracey - the info you are receiving does sound correct. If tenants fail to respond you will receive your money in due course. If you think about it can you honestly see a tenant going to a solicitor to get their form signed? Also renters frequently change plans and lack of a current address will also not be helping.

The deposit and its return is not often letting agent business but the responsibility of the landlord. Be patient and all will be sorted.


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As far as i am aware the tenants don't have to have their side witnessed , unless they have iniciated a single claim before yours

But you can't both do a single claim

It is simple really ,if you claim part of deposit back from DPS , then you let them know how much and why , the claim is sent to the tenants to see if they agree.

if they do not agree it can go to arbritration,unless you ticked the box to say you do not want it to go to arbritration, and i would recommend that you do that.

If you are get no response after 14 days then you can take it to single claim, that's when solicitor on your side has to witness.

It does not sound correct that the DPS are waiting to have their singleclaim part witnessed(as then it wouldn't be in single claim would it ?)

The DPS probably meant they are waiting for a response to your claim from the tenant.

Sounds like the agent hasn't got a clue , or maybe fobbing you off,

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Thanks Mortitia.

TBF, our letting agent has taken this on himself and is very keen to get it right.

I can't see our tenants doing anything in a timely manner, let alone anything which involves them putting themselves out (they are not very bright and have clearly not worked out that it is in their best interests to do so!).

We were pessimistic abouth recovering any part of the deposit, but it sounds like we may by default,so happy days!

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Sorry, Julles - cross-posted.

This is why I'm confused.

The info I have had from our letting agent, as given to him by the DPS, is that he has requested part of the deposit, the tenants disagreed, the LA agreed to go to arbitration.

The tenants were then sent a statutory declaration form to be witnessed...they haven't returned it so the whle process starts again, and, according to our LA, the DPS have said we don't have to do anything until the tenants respond to our request to withhold part of the deposit.

I'm lost!

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Here's what the LA emailed us this morning -

Have heard from the DPS who confirmed that our repayment request (i.e. we retain a sum of money) has been rejected by the lead tenant. As a result either party can start the repayment process again but this time, we would be asked if we wanted to use the ADRS (Alternative Dispute Resolution Service). You may recall we have been here before and we have!! The tenants, as previously, are sent a “statutory declaration form” that in addition to rejecting our claim, have to complete, sign, have sworn by a solicitor or similar, and return to the DPS. They have not!! True a solicitor will charge for a “swearing” but it should be about £5.00. Because they have not returned the “stat dec”, it all goes back to the beginning………….again!

So……I have requested a release of bond, withholding the original £266.98. The DPS have though confirmed we now do nothing until the other side respond as they should. We continue to wait and see!!

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Ah missed that bit that the tenant has already disagreed. so yes they need to return the papers

mistake to go to arbritration though as DPS favour tenant , experienced that myself,

Hope the agent has good infantry and excellent evidence of damage .

As mortitia says you will need to be patient,if the tenant does not return their part then DPS will pay it as requested.

Have the DPS said that you need to start the process again or now go through single claim.

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As I understand it, the DPS have said we have to start the process again - how many opportunities do the tenants get before the DPS end the case and release the money? Knowing our tenants, this could go on indefinitely (we know that they have a long-term habit of ignoring paperwork and requests for info).

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well I am sort of lost now because my understanding was that if tenant did not respond you then take it to single claim.

As your tenants have already disagreed I assume they have now been sent the forms they need to have "sworn" and if they are not returned then the DPS will pay eventually.

I have not heard of you having to start again...what's the point of that?

Can you not talk to DPS yourself?

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I think we're going to have to talk to the DPS ourselves (if we can - LA has the ID number for th deposit,not us, so perhaps they won't speak specifially about this to us?)

It could be that the LA has misunderstood what he's been told...which is what I'm worried about. Or maybe it's become more complicated because the tenants have lost their ID number, so have to now prove who they are??

I don't think I'll hold my breath!

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If tenants have lost their repayment number (which is different to their ID number )then they can have that emailed , or texted or sent to them.

That can be done through the DPS websight, and should not cause anyproblems other than a bit longer time .

You should have a copy of ID number of deposit, probably repayment number that is only for agents eyes.

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LA rang this morning, to say that he'd had an email from the DPS and it appeared they had agreed to repay £255 to us, £270 to the tenants.

He said he had to read it a couple of times to quite believe it, but if we were happy to let go of the other £15 we'd disputed, all he had to do was click to say he approved of the repayment.

Following a couple of hours of euphoric disbelief that it could all be resolved so easily, I'm now back to wondering (and worrying) that perhaps he's misunderstood, and that the repayment agreement is actually only for the tenants to receive the undisputed amount.

If that was the case, wouldn't the DPS return ONLY the undisputed amount - which was £255 to the tenants, NOT £270?

I'm utterly confused - we also recieved a text from the lead tenant this morning, asking us what the £270 was for.... :S

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  • 9 years later...

Please help:    No win No Fee Solicitors acting or  previous Tenant, taking me to court as Estate agent didn't lodge deposit until 6 months into 18 month Tenancy.

I entered an agreement and trusted Agent would carry out the work i paid them to do.   Not at any point did the Tenant query this with me. 

If they received their deposit and were not at any loss (apart from adjudicators decision on repairs) where do I stand in Court?  I am shocked that there are claiming £6,800 from me, due to agents negligence.   Will a judge see these tenants as money grabbing?


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I would take legal advice as to how to pass the effects of the claim to the Agent.

A similar situation with a local and larger LL than I defended the case that Shelter took on for his ex tenant. They won and there was a £16k bill for Shelters legal expenses also. A bit scary that it isn't just the claim that bites.

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It may be that the Agent didn't protect the deposit in the time allowed but the buck stops with the landlord. It's up to the landlord to check these things......I do and everyone I know does. We check, we ask for copies of all the documents and we file them according. What we don't do is employ an Agent and then walk away and let them screw it up.

In law they can take you for a lot of money, you can try to defend but will almost definitely loose.

If you loose you have the option of taking action against the Agents to recover your losses from them.

Do you have any insurance ?

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You are the landlord and therefore responsible and the the tenant has the right to make a claim UP TO 3x the value of the deposit +the return of deposit.

HOWEVER, you employed the agent to perform a service and if you are being taken to court for their mistake you would have a valid claim against them if you suffer a loss in the court.    

Have you informed the agent yet of their error and ask what they plan to do to rectify their mistake or give an undertaking to underwrite any financial award made against you. They need to be informed in writing of the situation. 

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