Return Security Deposit - Deposit never put into DPS and letting agency disappeared!
I moved into a student rented house with my housemates in July 2010, of which the landlord used a property letting agency which took the deposits in Feb 2010 when we sign the tenancy agreements. This agreement stated that the deposits would be placed into a security deposit sceme (DPS), and then from there would be kept secure till the end of the tenancy agreement when we move out. From then on we basically forgot about the deposits like anyone would over the two year period we rented the property.
Shortly after we moved in that July we where informed that letting agency would be changing names and one of the owner had sold his part of the business but this wouldn't affect us in any way and we would still continue to pay rent etc to the same place.
After living in the property for a year the landlord informed us that he would be changing letting agencies due to the lack of care the current letting agency where taking with his property and everything would be staying the same and he will introduce the new letting agency to us and the deposits etc would be transfered over from the old to the the new chosen letting agency.
After living in the property for the two year whilst studying at university the end of our tenancy came (July 2012) and we all moved out, whilst also in contact with the (new)/current letting agency about the return of our deposits and expected to have some news on this within the usual 4-6 weeks.
After this period came and went i then persistently contact the agency along with my housemates trying to get some sort of information on the matter and a time period it would be resolved in.
The letting agency explained that our deposits weren't transfered over from the old agency and the basically didn't have our money and couldn't do anything about it, so we would have to contact the landlord. Upon doing this the landlord explained that the original letting agency who originally took our deposits failed to put the into security deposit scheme, and better still the owner who sold his part of this original agency was responsible for this and walked off with our deposits when the agency was sold and changed names.
I was given the details for this "original owner" and tried to contact him, spoke to him once and he said to speak to his solicitor then put the phone down without giving any details..... good one!
from then on i dont get any answer from his contact details apart from the hotels reception that he owns but he never rings back.
So, basically im still in contact with the landlord of the property who when the last time i spoke to him was trying to take him to court about it, but this would be a lengthily process and "a case has to be built".
But dispit this i still have no new on the return of my deposit and when this might be... baring in mind that i moved out of the properly in July of this year.
I'm now in the situation where i dont know what to do next about it and dont know where i stand legally. Personally i feel that as the landlord chose to use a letting agency to rent the property, so he should be responsible and should have to give us our deposits, and if he wishes to continue disputing with the old letting agency owner through his solicitor he can do.
So is my landlord legally responsible for giving us our deposits back even though they original owner of the first letting agency has them (supposedly) and didn't put them into a deposit scheme which has to be done by law?
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