You and your tenant can't agree how to split the deposit

An introduction to disputes and damages

Dispute Resolution

You’ve reached the end of your tenancy but you haven’t been able to agree with your tenants how the 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 tenants have agreed to use the Dispute Resolution Service:



You submit your evidence in support of your claim and your tenants provide their own evidence supporting their position. We won’t request specific items of evidence so make sure you send everything relevant to your claim.

  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 tenants.

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 tenants, 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 tenants 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.

The evidence submission process >