Your landlord or letting agent disagrees with your claim for deductions

Dispute Resolution

You’ve reached the end of your tenancy but you haven’t been able to agree with your landlord or letting how your deposit should be returned. To help you break the deadlock, our free Dispute Resolution Service is here to help.


How does the dispute resolution process work?

The dispute resolution process is straightforward. If both you, and your landlord or letting agent have agreed to use the Dispute Resolution Service:



Your landlord or letting agent submits their evidence in support of their claim and you provide your own evidence supporting your position.

  We send the evidence to an independent, impartial adjudicator.

  The adjudicator reviews the evidence and decides how the deposit will be repaid.

  We send the adjudicator’s decision to both you and your landlord or letting agent.


For custodial deposits, both parties have 14 days from starting the adjudication process to submit their evidence. Once they’ve received the evidence, the adjudicator then has 28 days to provide a decision. This means the process can take up to six weeks, although it’s often quicker.

For Insured Scheme deposits, the process is slightly different as explained in these guides.

It can help to talk to your landlord or letting agent, even while the dispute is in progress as you can still reach an agreement with each other before the adjudicator makes their decision. Once the adjudicator has decided how to award the disputed funds, their decision is final and binding. 

If either you or your landlord or letting agent decide they don’t want to use our free Dispute Resolution Service, the dispute will have to be resolved through the courts which can be costly and time consuming.


What makes good evidence? ›