The controversial judgement in the notorious Superstrike case has now been overturned by law. It means that prescribed information no longer has to be re-served on every renewal. This and other changes to do with deposits come into force immediately.
Agents and landlords are also warned that this means the clock is now ticking towards the deadline by which they must protect a deposit taken on older tenancies. The deadline is June 23 and relates to deposits taken before April 6, 2007. Failure to protect such deposits by June 23 could mean penalties and the inability to use a Section 21 notice to gain possession of the property.
The rules are now as follows:
Deposits taken before April ‘07 where the tenancy became periodic after that date. All deposits must now be protected and the prescribed information must be served by 23 June 2015. If you protect and serve the PI within this time, the deposit will be treated as if it had always been protected.
Deposits taken after April ‘07 that have been protected and the prescribed information served during the original fixed term. These will be treated as if the prescribed information had been served on every renewal or whenever a statutory periodic tenancy arose – even if the prescribed information was served late initially. Provided of course that the deposit continues to be protected with the same deposit scheme. So you no longer need to keep re-serving the prescribed information. Once will do.
Deposits taken before April ‘07 which became periodic before that date. Here you are not in breach of the law and you don’t have to protect the deposit now. However the deposit must be protected or the money returned to the tenant (or the person who paid it) before any s21 notice can be served. Landlords will not be liable for any financial penalty for non protection.
Court proceedings If you are involved in court proceedings for possession, you can take advantage of the new rules.
Letting agents The prescribed information rules have also been amended to allow for agents’ details to be given instead of landlords’ details where the agent is dealing with the deposit.