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SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

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sazzle
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SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby sazzle » Wed, 18 Oct 2017 2:23 pm

Hi Guys, really need some advice and would absolutely love to hear from anyone who has been in this position.

In a nutshell, our property was made uninhabitable through no fault of our own, our nightmare of a landlord refused to put us in temporary accommodation while extensive construction went on (we had a 5 month old at the time) and he basically offered no help or rent refund etc. We were forced to move out in to safe accommodation, a proper legal handover with LL was carried out, LL signed off on everything and promised out deposit back within 2 weeks as per the TA...of course this didn't happen.

After an UNBELIEVABLY stressful couple of months, and $6000 down in moving costs/new deposit etc etc, we've taken the LL to small claims court. After hearing the crazy ranting of our LL (who tried to counter sue for $20,000 even after being told several times, SCT only hears up to $10,000) the judge ruled in our favour and ordered the LL to give us our security deposit back, plus 19 days rent since we'd paid for a full month previous to the incident. All of his 'claims' against us were heard and dismissed as irrelevant.

LL immediately replied that he wouldnt pay and was going to appeal in the high court, judge looked bored and urged him to 'think seriously about seeking proper legal advice' before doing that.

Outside the court room, waiting for our ruling to be printed, LL said to us that he was not going to pay no matter what. And, despite clearly having the money and owning 2 properties, I believe he would do ANYTHING to not pay as he's SO stubborn.

He has 2 weeks, until 30th Oct, to pay up. After which time I thought the court would follow up, but Ive just learned that they dont...apparently if we don't enforce the court order, its basically forgotten about.

It wasnt explained to us very well, but from what we've gathered, we have 3 options and honestly, none of them are super appealing so this is where I'd love some advice/first hand knowledge.

We can 'hire' bailiffs of the court with a 'writ of seizure and sale' to go to LL's place and take his stuff up to the value of judges order, plus their own fee. (I would def love more info on this while process if anyone knows it or has personal experience with this!) My understanding is that the risk of doing this is that he may 'hide' anything of value, or we might not get the right address for him, and then end up even more out of pocket having to pay the bailiffs fees ourselves. Or his stuff just might not reach that much in Auction...(for the record, he's an older single guy.)

Second option we were told about is to hire a lawyer, who can file on our behalf to 'garnish wages', basically see what he has in his bank account and just take the amount IF its in there. (again, comes with risks, and either way we're out of pocket with lawyers fees, PLUS we only have his bank details that we paid rent into...if he's moved his money out of there, nothing comes of it.) Finally, private debt collector. (who take around 15% plus a $450 admin fee) Im not sure how they go about getting the money back, it is hassling him/ damaging his credit rating etc?!

Is there anything we can do?? It's such an anti climax to have had so much stress the last couple of months, win the case and then be told its on us to make sure its enforced.

The amount owed to us is $4042...we are a one income family with a new baby (having paid for the birth ourselves due to rubbish insurance) and not on a typical expat package, so hoping not to hear that we should let it go, or its not that much in the grand scheme of things, as it really is to us! Thanks for any advice!

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby ecureilx » Wed, 18 Oct 2017 5:23 pm

sazzle wrote:Hi Guys, really need some advice and would absolutely love to hear from anyone who has been in this position.

In a nutshell, our property was made uninhabitable through no fault of our own, our nightmare of a landlord refused to put us in temporary accommodation while extensive construction went on (we had a 5 month old at the time) and he basically offered no help or rent refund etc. We were forced to move out in to safe accommodation, a proper legal handover with LL was carried out, LL signed off on everything and promised out deposit back within 2 weeks as per the TA...of course this didn't happen.

After an UNBELIEVABLY stressful couple of months, and $6000 down in moving costs/new deposit etc etc, we've taken the LL to small claims court. After hearing the crazy ranting of our LL (who tried to counter sue for $20,000 even after being told several times, SCT only hears up to $10,000) the judge ruled in our favour and ordered the LL to give us our security deposit back, plus 19 days rent since we'd paid for a full month previous to the incident. All of his 'claims' against us were heard and dismissed as irrelevant.

LL immediately replied that he wouldnt pay and was going to appeal in the high court, judge looked bored and urged him to 'think seriously about seeking proper legal advice' before doing that.

Outside the court room, waiting for our ruling to be printed, LL said to us that he was not going to pay no matter what. And, despite clearly having the money and owning 2 properties, I believe he would do ANYTHING to not pay as he's SO stubborn.

He has 2 weeks, until 30th Oct, to pay up. After which time I thought the court would follow up, but Ive just learned that they dont...apparently if we don't enforce the court order, its basically forgotten about.

It wasnt explained to us very well, but from what we've gathered, we have 3 options and honestly, none of them are super appealing so this is where I'd love some advice/first hand knowledge.

We can 'hire' bailiffs of the court with a 'writ of seizure and sale' to go to LL's place and take his stuff up to the value of judges order, plus their own fee. (I would def love more info on this while process if anyone knows it or has personal experience with this!) My understanding is that the risk of doing this is that he may 'hide' anything of value, or we might not get the right address for him, and then end up even more out of pocket having to pay the bailiffs fees ourselves. Or his stuff just might not reach that much in Auction...(for the record, he's an older single guy.)

Second option we were told about is to hire a lawyer, who can file on our behalf to 'garnish wages', basically see what he has in his bank account and just take the amount IF its in there. (again, comes with risks, and either way we're out of pocket with lawyers fees, PLUS we only have his bank details that we paid rent into...if he's moved his money out of there, nothing comes of it.) Finally, private debt collector. (who take around 15% plus a $450 admin fee) Im not sure how they go about getting the money back, it is hassling him/ damaging his credit rating etc?!

Is there anything we can do?? It's such an anti climax to have had so much stress the last couple of months, win the case and then be told its on us to make sure its enforced.

The amount owed to us is $4042...we are a one income family with a new baby (having paid for the birth ourselves due to rubbish insurance) and not on a typical expat package, so hoping not to hear that we should let it go, or its not that much in the grand scheme of things, as it really is to us! Thanks for any advice!
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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby sazzle » Wed, 18 Oct 2017 8:11 pm

Thanks, I agree. I really can't believe he's still refusing! It looks like only Singaporeans and PRs are eligible for this service though. We're EP/DP

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby PNGMK » Thu, 19 Oct 2017 2:17 pm

Someone else has posted about this as well - do a search.

Remember that the costs of recovery could be added to the judgement. I personally would explore the private debt collection option. The guys here are pretty good. Does he have a car? That could be seized.

Another thing to consider looking at is to seek advice as to whether you could have a caveat put on the property. That should be relatively straight forward and while it won't generate income it completely stuffs up his chances of selling it as the caveat has to be cleared. Even if you don't put one on - the mere threat of it is probably enough.


https://singaporelegaladvice.com/law-ar ... singapore/

http://www.sla.gov.sg/Portals/0/Newslet ... caveat.htm
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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby sazzle » Thu, 19 Oct 2017 10:57 pm

Thats really interesting, hadn't heard of that! Thanks for the info. I tried doing a seach and got loads of stuff about people going to small claims court, but none about LL ignoring the court order afterwards :(

Will look into the property caveat some more thanks!

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby x9200 » Fri, 20 Oct 2017 6:55 am

sazzle wrote: I tried doing a seach and got loads of stuff about people going to small claims court, but none about LL ignoring the court order afterwards :(


viewtopic.php?t=100447

If this is not the one then try to look for the threads with the word bailiff.

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby Max Headroom » Fri, 20 Oct 2017 7:29 am

My advise is not to turn this thing into a personal issue. Easier said than done, sure, but try to let go - just have a detached mindset that you will get your money. Don't give up.

The good news is that the LL has it much much worse. He may appear bochap and stubborn, but, trust me, his stress is way higher. He stands to lose much more, especially after the ruling.

I'm sure he wants this to end more than you. It's just that people like this just can't help themselves.

Be determined. Be patient. Be cool.

Good luck.

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby taxico » Sat, 21 Oct 2017 11:18 pm

don't use a lawyer... at least, not yet. you likely won't get reimbursed by the LL for the (full) amount spent on the lawyer (s15 of state courts act or EJD).

get a debt collector...

otherwise... (do this under s16 of state courts act)

go to crimson logic/lawnet and commence enforcement action yourself. filed under magistrate's court/order. $200+ fee applies (possibly $100+ i can't remember).

check out elitigation.sg first... and see how much everything comes up to. you may also want to do some due diligence in case he's a bankrupt...??

you will need to know what address you want to go seize stuff from, and think about what stuff he has you would like to seize...

after you get your writ a few weeks later, you can engage a bailliff. there's a deposit of $300 to be lodged.

an bailiff is about $50/hour (?) to hire. you will need to go with him.

it's likely once you show up with a bailiff, the LL will pay. if he doesn't open up, you'll probably have to go again a second time (more costs involved) with the bailiff and a locksmith.

if LL does not pay, then you'll have to fork out more money to the auction house/court to value/auction the seized items... your LL will still have 7 days grace before it goes anywhere near that point.

i suspect it won't come to that. but if it does, then you can get your bailiff/WSS expenses covered by the stuff seized and auctioned.

before you do any of that, send a registered letter to your LL. text him. whatsapp him. keep him updated... and give him options... and consequences.

good luck! (and don't pay money to the lawyers if you can help it.)
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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby sazzle » Tue, 24 Oct 2017 9:39 am

Amazing info, thanks so much! Theres shockingly little out there on what happens after SCT...I guess most LLs just pay up! I think Debt Collection looks like the cheapest way to go at $800. I need to find out more detail about what they actually do to get the money back though! Thanks again and will keep this thread updated if (when!!) We get the money back and how

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby Strong Eagle » Tue, 24 Oct 2017 11:21 am

sazzle wrote:Amazing info, thanks so much! Theres shockingly little out there on what happens after SCT...I guess most LLs just pay up! I think Debt Collection looks like the cheapest way to go at $800. I need to find out more detail about what they actually do to get the money back though! Thanks again and will keep this thread updated if (when!!) We get the money back and how


Kneecaps cost an extra $400.

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby PNGMK » Tue, 24 Oct 2017 7:04 pm

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby martincymru » Wed, 25 Oct 2017 9:21 am

When I was cheated some time ago I sent a cryptic letter to his Managing Director ..... he paid me in full later the same day.

If you are brave enough then there other means....... especially if you have "information" about him.

Threaten him...... IRAS, etc.

Tell the new tenant they will not get their deposit back.

Creative thinking is needed.

I never use lawyers, bailiffs, court and all that straight line nonsense. These people are experts in that field since it will not be their first time, that's for sure.

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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby PNGMK » Wed, 25 Oct 2017 12:17 pm

martincymru wrote:When I was cheated some time ago I sent a cryptic letter to his Managing Director ..... he paid me in full later the same day.

If you are brave enough then there other means....... especially if you have "information" about him.

Threaten him...... IRAS, etc.

Tell the new tenant they will not get their deposit back.

Creative thinking is needed.

I never use lawyers, bailiffs, court and all that straight line nonsense. These people are experts in that field since it will not be their first time, that's for sure.


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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby taxico » Sat, 28 Oct 2017 1:34 am

sazzle wrote:Amazing info, thanks so much! Theres shockingly little out there on what happens after SCT...I guess most LLs just pay up! I think Debt Collection looks like the cheapest way to go at $800. I need to find out more detail about what they actually do to get the money back though! Thanks again and will keep this thread updated if (when!!) We get the money back and how


$300 deposit is refundable in most "kiasu" (non-deadbeat) situations.
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Re: SCT order landlord to pay up, he's refusing...now what??

Postby sazzle » Sat, 04 Nov 2017 5:07 pm

Thanks everyone for your help...he paid!!

He until until midnight on 30th Oct to pay...he paid at 11.40pm on 30th Oct :roll: Whatever makes him feel better...!

We really can't believe it it took lots of emails/texts and a visit to his apartment, but I'm so relieved we didn't have all the additional hassle had he not paid.

For anyone in a similar boat, the bailiffs does seem to be the best option if you have LLs address. It's a $400 deposit, which can be added to the amount owed so you're not out of pocket, and they will take off whatever bailiff fees eta and give you back whatever wasn't spent. So pretty good.

There's shockingly little info about ways to enforce a court order, I now feel like a bit of an expert :-| so when I have more time, I'll make a post in here with all the options we were given.

Thanks everyone who posted and advised!


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