Landlords are legally required to protect deposits paid by tenants using one of three government-approved
schemes, and they must do so within 30 days of having received the payment. If your landlord failed to do so,
you may be entitled to compensation worth up to 3x your deposit plus the deposit itself back.
✔ Deposit Protection Service
✔ Tenancy Deposit Scheme
If you began – or renewed – your tenancy agreement within the last 6 years and your deposit was not protected in one of these approved schemes, you can make a claim. You are also able to make additional claims for each subsequent breach.
How much compensation can I get if my tenancy deposit was not protected?
Successful cases are typically awarded up to three times the original deposit, meaning a
£500 deposit may be worth up to £2,000.
Who can make a tenancy deposit claim?
Any tenant renting a property under an assured shorthold tenancy (see 'what is an AST?') agreement is required to have their deposit protected by their landlord within 30 days of receipt. Your landlord is also required to provide you with written information about this, including which scheme they have used. They are also required to keep your deposit safe throughout your tenancy and cannot access it unless under specific circumstances – at which point they should inform you. If your landlord broke these rules, you can make a claim.
You do not need to still be a tenant at the property.
You can claim if:
- You began or renewed your tenancy within the last 6 years
- Paid a deposit
- You know or believe your deposit was not protected
- You were not issued details of the deposit protection scheme
- Your landlord failed to protect your deposit within 30 days of receiving it
- You have since terminated your contract, but your deposit was not returned by your landlord
- You have a copy of your tenancy agreement
How much does it cost to make a tenancy deposit claim?
At CEL Solicitors we work on a no-win, no-fee basis, meaning we only ask for payment if we are successful. If your case is unsuccessful, you won’t pay a penny.
When your claim is successful, however, our costs are claimed back from the defendant (your landlord), plus a small portion of your reward as a success fee.
Why claim with CEL Solicitors?
At CEL Solicitors we have a proven track record of defending tenants against unlawful landlords and have helped thousands of tenants claim compensation.
As a people before profits company, we operate on a no-win, no-fee basis, ensuring money isn’t a barrier to people seeking legal support.
We have strict criteria for the claims that we accept, which means you can rest safe in the knowledge that if we accept a case, we’re certain we will win. We do this so we can be sure that we’re in the best position to help all of our clients to the best of our ability.
Before accepting a case, we offer a free one-hour consultation to fully understand the situation and offer guidance and support. This means we can provide help even to cases we’re unable to accept.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The tenancy deposit is the money you pay in advance of moving into a property. Sometimes known as a ‘security deposit’. The exact amount allowed to be charged depends on the overall yearly rental price.
No. You can only bring a claim in relation to a tenancy/security deposit.
The majority of private tenancy agreements in the UK are automatically classed as assured shorthold tenancies. Any private rental agreement starting since 1989 is likely an AST.
Your tenancy agreement is likely not an AST if;
- your tenancy was agreed to before 1989
- your rent is higher than £100,000/less than £250 per year
- if your tenancy agreement is with a local council
- the agreement was for a business premises
Your landlord should return your deposit no later than 10 days from the date you request your deposit, following the termination of your tenancy.
Your landlord is limited in what they’re allowed to deduct from your deposit, as technically it is still your money, and is only being held by your landlord. If any deductions are made, they should inform you and provide evidence of the cost. Only issues that have cost your landlord money can be deducted from your deposit, such as unpaid rent and damage to the property.
If you paid a tenancy deposit at the start of your tenancy, you are legally entitled to get it back when you leave. Your landlord can deduct money from your deposit under certain circumstances, though they should have informed you of this and provided evidence of the cost. If you believe that your landlord has made a mistake or unfairly made deductions from your deposit you can contest this.
Your landlord cannot charge you an additional fee for the protection of your deposit. Any insurance and membership fees associated with the deposit protection scheme should be paid for by the landlord.
Your landlord must place your deposit into one of three protected government-backed schemes within 30 days of receiving it from you. They must also inform you once this has been done and give you details of the scheme.
If you have unpaid rent, we will need to speak to you before we can make a decision on whether to accept your case. You may still be able to make a claim, depending on the amount of rent owed and the deposit paid.
If you are no longer a tenant at the property, you can still make a tenancy deposit claim. It will also deny your landlord the ability to threaten you with eviction in response. You can launch a claim up to 6 years from when your tenancy began and when your deposit was paid.
We do require evidence that your deposit was paid to your landlord at the start of your tenancy. There are many ways you can give this evidence, including a bank statement, or a receipt.
The Tenancy Deposit Scheme is one of the three authorised deposit protection services operating in the UK under government legislation.
MyDeposits is one of the three authorised deposit protection services operating in the UK under government legislation.
The Deposit Protection Service is one of the three authorised deposit protection services operating in the UK under government legislation.
If you can send across a copy of your tenancy agreement, we will be in a much better position to investigate your claim and find out how much compensation you may be awarded.
Section 21 notices cannot be issued if the landlord failed to use one of the three approved deposit schemes, and any eviction would be unlawful.
Why choose CEL Solicitors?
CEL Solicitors are experts in civil litigation and have helped thousands of clients with their housing-related claims
from housing disrepair issues to tenancy deposit claims. We have a proven record of helping our clients fight for the
compensation they deserve and holding landlords to account.
We have a strict criteria for the claims that we accept, which means you can rest safe in the knowledge that if we
accept a case, we’re certain we will win. We do this so we can be sure that we’re in the best position to help all
of our clients to the best of our ability. Thanks to our free one-hour initial consultation we are also able to
offer support and guidance even on cases we are unable to accept, meaning you have nothing to lose in making an enquiry.
At CEL we believe in putting ‘people before profits’. This is why we primarily try to fund claims on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis.
We also monitor our competitor’s success fees and charging rates in order to offer our clients a competitive deal for
our legal services, meaning more money for you.