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Deposits and Tenancy Deposit Schemes (England)

Deposit Returning

17 May 2017 | 2 comments

I need to serve a s21 but I protected the deposit 2 days late. I understand that I have to give her back the deposit before I issue the s.21 but she is saying she doesn’t want it back until she leaves! How do I give her back her deposit so I can serve her notice? At what point can she pursue me for 3x the deposit? I don’t have her bank details and if I send a cheque there is no guarantee she will cash it. I am an accidental landlord also in private rented myself but I financially need to go home now with my 4 young children and I am panicking how I do this without alerting her to the fact that I registered it late! She doesn’t want to leave unless its into a council house. She paid 6 months rent upfront and was supposed to pay the remaining 6 months rent on 1st November but couldn’t so started paying monthly – she has not yet missed a payment.



  1. guildy

    In respect of returning the deposit by cheque, that will be fine and please see here for details.

    The penalty is between 1 and 3 x deposit at the discretion of the court. It’s for the tenant to make a claim against you and in our view any penalty would be at the lower end of the scale. Please see this article for a similar situation.

    Once you have returned the deposit, you will be able to serve a section 21.

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