The Government has again announced its intention to extend various Coronavirus (COVID-19) related measures, along with new legislation to assist landlords and tenants in dealing with accrued rent arrears.
The Government has announced its intention to:
- Extend the existing restrictions on statutory demands and winding up petitions for COVID-19 related debts by 3 months to 30 September 2021.
- Extend the restrictions on rent-related forfeiture of business tenancies by 9 months to 25 March 2022.
- Extend the restrictions on commercial rent arrears recovery action/CRAR by 9 months to 25 March 2022.
- Introduce entirely new legislation in order to support commercial landlords and tenants and to deal with the accrued rent arrears of businesses that were forced to shut during periods of relevant COVID-19 restrictions. This may force landlords to waive or agree to long-term repayment plans for repayment of rent arrears. A binding arbitration process will be introduced accordingly to facilitate a formal agreement between the parties if an agreement cannot be made informally.
These measures are likely to offer some further relief to businesses who were preparing for the protections ending at the end of June. Landlords’ initial disappointment following the Government’s announcement on the extensions may be abated by the new legislation on rent arrears and the new arbitration process.
Posted on June 18, 2021