Covid 19 Update

November 2020

The Public Health (Coronavirus) (Protection from Eviction and Taking Control of Goods) (England) Regulations 2020 (‘the Regulations’) came into force on 17 November 2020. These Regulations affect England only.

Eviction

To protect against Coronavirus transmission, no eviction notices can be served on residential tenants nor can bailiffs execute warrants of possession of land, from the 17 November 2020 until 11 January 2021, unless an exemption applies. The exemptions are:

1. To evict occupants where ‘substantial’ rent arrears have accrued. The arrears must equate to 9 months’ rent and must have accrued before the 23 March 2020;

2. To evict trespassers;

3. To evict occupants on the grounds of anti-social behaviour;

4. To evict occupants on the grounds of nuisance or domestic abuse or false statements; and

5. Where a property is unoccupied following the death of a tenant.

Court proceedings to obtain a possession order are still ongoing but unless an exemption applies, no evictions are expected to be enforced until 25 January 2021 at the earliest.

Seizing Goods

The Regulations also introduced a temporary ban on bailiffs attending a dwelling house to execute a warrant of control (in order to seize the tenant’s goods in order to be sold to recover arrears) from the 17 November 2020 until the national restrictions are due to be lifted (expected 02 December 2020).

The contents of this Newsletter are for reference purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. Independent legal advice should be sought in relation to any specific legal matter.

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