The Deregulation Bill received Royal Assent yesterday 26 March 2015 which means the provisions relating to tenancy deposit schemes are now in force.
We await the final version of what will be the Deregulation Act 2015 when it is published but if we assume the provisions contained in the Bill have been carried forward with minimal change then the following will now be in place. To clarify, we have still not seen the final version that was passed by the House of Lords and so the Act could be slightly different to that shown and we will be writing a more detailed article when we see the final version.
It is likely the following now applies:
- To get rid of the problem caused by Superstrike where a deposit has been received prior to 6 April 2007 AND went statutory periodic ON OR AFTER 6 April 2007, the deposit must be protected and prescribed information given within 90 days starting from 26 March 2015. If this is done, it will be treated as though it has always been done.
- Where a deposit has been received before 6 April 2007 AND the tenancy went periodic BEFORE 6 April 2007, before any section 21 notice can be served, the deposit must be protected and prescribed information given or the deposit returned in full to the tenant. There will be no penalty for any late protection. This confirms the Court of Appeal decision Charalambous & Anor v Maureen Rosairie NG & Anor
- Where a deposit in relation to an assured shorthold tenancy has been perfectly protected, perfect prescribed information given within the correct timescales and that tenancy either goes statutory periodic or a renewal is given by the same landlord to the same tenants for the same property as the original, the prescribed information will be treated as having been given at each periodic or renewal so there will be no need for a landlord to re-issue all the paperwork again. This provision is backdated to 2007 so all landlords and agents who correctly protected and gave correct prescribed information at the beginning of the tenancy are deemed to have complied since the introduction of the legislation.
- There was a question over whose details should be placed on the prescribed information – landlord or agent. The position is now clarified and it can be either person shown on the prescribed information.
I know we have said this already but this is all subject to seeing the final Act when published.