Businesses will be protected from the threat of eviction until the end of year, providing commercial tenants with greater security and protecting vital jobs, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick has announced today (16 September 2020).
Today’s measures are on top of the wider ranging financial package provided by the UK government, backed by £160 billion, to protect jobs, incomes and business throughout and beyond this pandemic.
The government is clear that where businesses can pay their rent, they should do so, as this support is aimed to those businesses struggling the most during the pandemic.
This move will help those businesses most in need of additional support to remain in their premises without the threat of eviction for the rest of this year, giving them the chance to focus on rebuilding their business over the autumn and Christmas period.
Secretary of State for Housing Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP said:
I am announcing today that we are extending support to protect those businesses that are unable to pay their rent from eviction to the end of the year. This will stop businesses going under and protect jobs over the coming months.
This government is committed to supporting businesses and our high streets at this difficult time, and this extension of support will help businesses recover from the impacts of the pandemic and plan for the future.
Business Secretary Alok Sharma said:
During this particularly challenging time for businesses, it is crucial that both landlords and tenants have the clarity and reassurance they need to build back better from the pandemic.
Extending the temporary measures we put in place earlier this year to protect businesses from the threat of eviction will give them some much-needed breathing space at a critical moment in the UK’s economic recovery.
This extension will protect businesses that are struggling to pay their rent due to the impact of COVID-19 from being evicted and help the thousands of people working in these sectors feel more secure about their jobs.
The government will also extend the restriction on landlords using Commercial Rents Arrears Recovery to enforce unpaid rent on commercial leases, until the end of the year.
The guidance is clear both landlords and tenants should continue to work together to agree rent payment options if businesses are struggling. In June, the government published a Code of Practice to support these discussions.
The Code of Practice was produced alongside leading businesses and trade associations to help guide and encourage all parties to work together to protect viable businesses and ensure a swift recovery.