Flat Chat Forum NCAT – the NSW Tribunal Current Page

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  • #48864
    AvatarBeachBoy
    Flatchatter

    NCAT. Dispute over unpaid rent.

    In October 2019, I moved out of a property I had been renting in Sydney, for nearly seven years.

    The property is solely owned by a young woman. I have never met or communicated, in any way with the property owner.
    At the time of my moving in, the property was “managed” by the mother of the owner.
    Its important to note that the rent was paid by automatic direct bank transfer, into an account solely in the name of the owner.

    The property “manager” never handled the rent money.

    During my tenancy I never had any dealings directly with the owner. I only knew her by the name of the bank account I transferred the rent money, to.
    During these years, there were two occasions when the mother and “manager” (not the owner) contacted me stating they had not received the rent. On both of these occasions I checked my bank account and found the rent had been paid and let her know. A few days later I received word that they had “found” the “missing” rent. All was well.

    About a year before I decided to move out, the father of the owner took over “managing” the property as his wife died. The rent was still paid into the same bank account, solely in the name of the owner.

    I decided to move out as the father, now “managing” the property, kept increasing the rent.

    When I sent my termination notice, I did not receive any communication of receipt of my notice to vacate. I did not receive any communication from the owner or “manager” for a final inspection, so this was not done. It also should be noted that the owner never wanted to inspect the property during the entire time of my tenancy. (Almost seven years)

    About a month after vacating, I received an email from the property “manager”, stating the “owner”, (his daughter) has not received the final rent payment.

    I checked my bank account and found the final rent payment was indeed made correctly and informed him. Shortly after this, I receive a notice from the tribunal claiming the final two weeks “unpaid” rent, plus some extra amount. The application is in the name of the father of the owner. The owner has not made any representations at all in this matter.

    On a date in January, we meet at NCAT at the appointed time. The owner is not present, only her father as “manager” of the property.

    Our “discussion”, predictably, ends in stalemate. I produce a copy of my bank statement, showing the amount has been paid. He confirms the payee bank account number as correct, but states “Well we don’t have it, so you have to chase it up”.

    I have checked with my bank on three separate occasions that the payment has been processed correctly, which they confirm. Of course they can only do so much as its up to the receiving bank to confirm receipt of the funds. The property “manager” maintains “his daughter” has not received the payment.

    This is about to go to NCAT for the third time, having been adjourned the previous two times.

    I would have thought producing my bank statement would be enough for NCAT to make a ruling, but they refuse to do so.

    The property “manager” keeps insisting we make a joint submission to the banking ombudsman to investigate the “missing” funds. He also wants NCAT to order me to do this.

    I do not want to do this as I don’t want to enter into any formal investigation with my name and signature attached to theirs. I certainly don’t want these people to have any of my personal details such as my bank account number and present address, etc, which is required on the submission.

    I also feel its quite unnecessary, as I am confident the funds have been transferred correctly. Basically, their mismanagement of their finances is not my problem.

    So to my questions –
    Why won’t NCAT accept my bank statements as proof of payment?

    Can NCAT actually order me to enter into a formal investigation with the banking ombudsman?

    Is there anywhere I can get proper legal advice from someone that actually knows this area of the law?

Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
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  • #48901
    Avatarmaryannbonett
    Flatchatter

    I wonder if there is a daughter?  Maybe she does not exist and the property belongs to the father.  This does not solve the problem but it is strange that you never dealt with her directly, only with her mother and father.

    #48885
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    It’s an Office of State revenue issue, not ATO.  Maybe you should send them this story from 2017 about someone being fined for first-home buyers grant fraud, and ask them if they really want to pursue the case.

    #48881
    AvatarBeachBoy
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    Yes, bond was paid at the beginning of the tenancy.

    Its currently frozen, pending the outcome of this long drawn out dispute.

    They have produced bank statements they say shows they have not received the final payment.

    I have my bank statements showing I have made the final rent payment. They have confirmed the bank account number that appears on my statement, but maintain they have not received the final rent payment.

    Thank you for the ATO suggestion. You just reminded me – I believe they claimed the first home buyers grant, but the owner did not live in it long enough to legitimately claim this.

    Is this an ATO jurisdiction?

    #48878
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    The recipient needs to show bank statements that have previous payments made by you, then missing payments.  In any case, your bank records should show the bank accounts that were paid into. Those are the accounts that he needs to produce.

     

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 3 weeks ago by .
    #48875
    AvatarDavid Ng
    Flatchatter

    Did you pay a bond at the beginning of the tenancy? If so have you got it back?

    If not, this hints at potential dodginess by the putative landlord.

    It may also be worth asking them if they have declared the income to the Australian Tax Office. If there’s a hesitation or reticence to respond then consider reporting them to the ATO.

    They like to get unpaid taxes back from dodgy landlords. And they laugh at delaying tactics.

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 3 weeks ago by .
    #48871
    AvatarBeachBoy
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    Thank you.

    Just to clarify – There has been two hearings at NCAT. Both have been dismissed, without a ruling.
    The first time the tribunal member told us to “sort it out ourselves, as this is not worth the tribunals time or the tax payers money that funds the tribunal”

    The owners father immediately submitted another application.

    At the next hearing the tribunal member adjourned the case, stating more information was required and that the property owner had to represent themselves and not leave it up to her father or any other “agent”.

    At both hearings he produced copies of bank statements showing the payment had not been received. (keep in mind this is not his bank account) This is the stalemate we are in.

    I have no idea what extra information they are expecting. What else can I submit besides my bank statements?

     

    Thank you for the  legal firm recommendations.

    #48866
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    That’s quite a saga.  As to your questions:

    Why won’t NCAT accept my bank statements as proof of payment?

    I have no idea.  You would have to ask them.  But it sounds like they have refuse to make a ruling (because there has been no hearing) not that they refused to acknowledge the payment.  Two differnt things.  I would be asking that the owner shows the bank staements from that account for the dates that your statement shows the payments were made (and from an account that shows other payments from you).

    Can NCAT actually order me to enter into a formal investigation with the banking ombudsman?

    I wouldn’t think so.  They are more likely to ask the owner to do as I suggested above.

    Is there anywhere I can get proper legal advice from someone that actually knows this area of the law?

    Try Redfern Legal Centre, who specialise in residential tenancies.  Or either of our sponsors, Sachs Gerace Lawyers or StrataAnswers.

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 3 weeks ago by .
    #48867
    scotlandxscotlandx
    Strataguru

    What a weird case. It sounds like NCAT have been hopeless.

    As you have proof you paid the money, tell them to show you proof it was not received into the account, i.e a bank statement. There is no need to muck around with the Banking Ombudsman, tell them to show you the ( missing) money!

     

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Flat Chat Forum NCAT – the NSW Tribunal Current Page