Small claim court

I have no faith in the deposit scheme as they have always sided with the tenants despite my legit proofs and fake documents from tenants. Can we claim damages by bypassing deposit scheme adjudicators and go direct to small claims court? what are my options? I have legal cover, will check with them, but as the saying goes a old compounder is better than a new doctor, there are experienced professionals here in this forum and I would like to hear your advice please

I had a bad experience like yourself with DPS. All photos etc and their excuses did not even make sense.

You do not have to use deposit scheme you can say you are going to use the courts instead. As far as I am aware anyway.

But if deposit is in insured scheme you have to return it to the deposit scheme whilst waiting for the courts to adjudicate.

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thanks, some people are litigious minded and read too much in between the lines, the tenant is one of them, almost threatening. I Need a quick way out. how long small claims court take to decide? do we need to go to the hearing?

The courts use exactly the same criteria as the deposit schemes. The only difference is likely to be that with the courts you pay for the judgement.

If you bypass the deposit scheme, a court judge is likely to be seriously annoyed the you are wasting the courts time and blocking other cases when you had another option. He may send you straight back to the deposit scheme or worse.

If you have good evidence then you are likely to get a good judgement. If the tenant lies and fakes documents you would need to be able to counter this with other documents and correspondence. This will be much easier with with a deposit scheme than a real time court environment where anything you dont have to hand cant be considered.

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thanks David, I take your point. Last time can u believe the tenant faked everything and yet DPS sided in favour of them, left me out of pocket nearly 10000 pounds. All faith lost in custodial schemes. I do intend to bypass them this time as the tenant is vindictive.


Small claims make a decision at the hearing (unless extremely complicated) and will review all the evidence beforehand.

Think most of it is still online since Covid.

The delay is getting the hearing in the beginning as there’s still a backlog.

Yes I can quite believe you as the same happened to me. Spent most of a week with loads of photos/evidence. It was a farce.

I take David122’s point too, but like you I would still take my chances with a court after my experience.

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I would recommend attending a hearing as you get a chance to question the defendant and to answer any questions they put.

If they are there and you are absent you are at a disadvantage.

As the papers are read beforehand I think the Judge has often made up their mind, but obviously still better to be there than not.

Easier to attend if online.

thanks all, much appreciated

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