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When is it legal to refuse a refund?

(7 Posts)
ecuse Thu 25-Apr-13 16:26:32

It's a minor sum of money but this has really annoyed me.

I have just sold my leasehold flat. I got in touch with the freeholder to ask for a refund of the ground rent that I've already paid for the couple of months between now and the end of the period when I no longer own it.

I was told they 'don't do refunds' and it was up to me to arrange a rebate from the purchaser since they apparently won't start paying until the beginning of the next period.

I wasn't aware of that and evidently neither was my solicitor. I've fired off an arsey letter demanding that they pay me back but I'm just wondering whether they're legally within their rights to refuse?

I paid rent in advance for a whole period when it turns out I'm only liable for part of it. Surely they can't refuse to pay me back the because I didn't do so in a way that is more convenient for them?!

I was charged from day 1 when I moved in pro-rata, not from the first day of the subsequent billing period. The freehold has changed hands in the meantime, so it wasn't by the same company, but it's obviously not some secret universal practice that everyone knows except me and my solicitor.

Gah! Cross!

Collaborate Thu 25-Apr-13 18:25:28

I'm pretty sure they're right.

GreatBallsofFluff Thu 25-Apr-13 22:05:58

Agree with collaborate. Your solicitor should have agreed a retention with the purchaser's solicitors to deal with ground rent/service charge etc. Once the accounts come through for that period from the management agency/freeholder then agreement can be made as to the amount of retention to be 'refunded' back to you and the amount to be returned to the purchasers.

I think anyway.

ivykaty44 Thu 25-Apr-13 22:09:32

tell your solicitor that you pay him to know - you don't pay him good money not to know, therefore he will need to refund you

GreatBallsofFluff Thu 25-Apr-13 22:19:32

Yes this should have all been clarified by your solicitor before completion. Particularly as the other side should have asked those questions (amount of ground rent and how often) so your solicitor should have been aware they existed.

PeppermintPasty Fri 26-Apr-13 11:47:42

This sounds very odd. I'm a conveyancing solicitor, and it is always your solicitor's job to produce a completion statement, showing the various apportionments re ground rent, service charge etc, and this should be settled on the day of completion.

From what you say, it would appear your solicitor is at fault here. Get on to them and complain.

ecuse Sun 28-Apr-13 11:52:46

Interesting. Thanks. I will do so, but it just seems odd that the freeholder can essentially ask a third party to pay me back on their behalf and then refuse to refund me if they haven't. Oh well. Everything about the property market is odd, so this is just one more thing! Cheers for the advice.

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