The government announced this week that the current ban on evicting commercial tenants which was due to expire on 30th June 2021 has now been extended until 25th March 2022.
Following the delay in lifting final Covid measures at the end of this month, Treasury Secretary Stephen Barclay announced this extension to support businesses who have been unable to trade, especially those in the retail and hospitality sectors which have been hit hard by the lockdowns and are estimated to be £5bn in rent debt.
The ban stops commercial landlords from being able to evict tenants or take them to court for non-payment of rent. The government are urging tenants to pay rent if they are able to do so and continue trading.
At the same time, it has been announced that plans are being put in place for an arbitration scheme to help resolve any rent disputes when the eviction ban is finally lifted. Where negotiations between landlord and tenant fail to reach a conclusion, both parties will be required to undertake compulsory arbitration.
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