This is a good one...

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Mike 123
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Hi, any thoughts on this problem please?
The background:
I have a flat that I have rented to a non-married couple and their young child (he was born just after they moved in) for around a year. Three months ago the boyfriend 'did a runner' and left her with the baby. I only found out when the rent due-date arrived & I had a distraught phone call from the lady. Trying to help, I helped her contact the correct Local Housing depts. and fill in the appropriate forms (she doesn't speak fluent English..). After 2 months I received some housing benefit - she agreed to pay a top up of 70 a month.
The problem:
The lady, who is foreign, has now let 2 'relatives' also stay at the flat. This is breaching the AST which clearly states a max of 3 people. Also, the LHA have stopped payments as her circumstances have changed and they are investigating. She has also failed to pay the correct top ups, and is behind on those too.
I think I have been more than patient and helpful and would like the flat back. My questions are:-
(1) I think my safest way to get a court eviction will be through the overcrowding issue - I have heard of cases where rent arrears gets thrown out if part payments have been made. Do you agree? In any case, what docs and when do I need to serve? Rent day is 8th.
(2) Do I need to get the 'guests' details? If so, do I have any rights through English Law to demand these are given?
(3) What would happen if my tenant moved out but the 'guests' remained? Are these then squatters? Or do they have a right to stay as they were 'granted permission' by the current tenant?
(4) The AST is in joint names - the lady and her ex-partner. I presume I still serve notice to both names, even though he is not there?
(5) The small deposit is in the ex-partners name. It is held with the DPS. I want to retain it as there has already been damage to new carpets plus it will go towards outstanding rent. I didn't re-serve the deposit documents at the end of the 6 month tenancy period (the issue wasn't well known then) and can't now as he is no longer there. Am I at risk of this ridiculous ruling that the tenant can get 3x the deposit as they weren't re-issued the same documents?
Phew, sorry that's so long. Would appreciate anyone's (correct) advice please. Thanks
28/12/2013 17:07

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