Ban on business evictions due to COVID-19 extended until SeptemberJuly 15th 2020
The government has extended the ban on businesses being evicted during the Covid pandemic until September.
Stephanie Johnson Associate Solicitor in our Dispute Resolution team provides an update.
The measures to protect struggling businesses include:
- amending the Coronavirus Act to extend the time period for suspension of the forfeiture of evictions from 30th June to 30th September 2020, meaning no business will be forced out of their premises if they a miss a payment in the next three months.
- preventing landlords using Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery unless they are owed 189 days of unpaid rent. The time period for which this measure is in force will be extended from 30th June to 30th September 2020.
- amending the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill to extend the temporary ban on the use of statutory demands and winding-up petitions where a company cannot pay its bills due to coronavirus until 30th September 2020.
A new code of practice has been developed with leaders from the retail, hospitality and property sectors to provide clarity for businesses when discussing rental payments and to encourage best practice so that all parties are supported.
The code is voluntary for businesses and is relevant to all commercial leases held in any sector that has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
It encourages tenants to continue to pay their rent in full if they are in a position to do so and advises that others should pay what they can, while acknowledging that landlords should provide support to businesses if they are able to do so.
Business Secretary Alok Sharma MP said: “By putting a stop to unreasonable evictions, these measures will protect jobs and provide further flexibility to our high street businesses that were trading successfully before the COVID-19 emergency, so they can focus on continuing to deliver for their customers and communities.
“Across the UK, the code will encourage tenants and landlords to be transparent in their discussions and to act reasonably and responsibly whilst recognising the impact that coronavirus has had on businesses’ finances.”
Please contact our Dispute Resolution team on 01228 516666 if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article.