Commercial leases: protections for tenants extended until the New Year

September 30, 2020

The UK government has extended various schemes to protect commercial tenants as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to affect the economy.

Of particular importance are the following.

Suspension of right to forfeit lease for non-payment of rent

The suspension imposed by the Coronavirus Act 2020 on the right to forfeit the lease for non-payment of rent due between 26 March and 30 June 2020 was previously extended to 30 September 2020. It has now been extended further to 31 December 2020.

Suspension of right to apply for winding up petitions

The same extension is applied to winding up petitions. Under the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 (CIGA), and the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 (Coronavirus) (Extension of the Relevant Period) Regulations 2020 (which came into force on 29 September), no winding up petition can be presented for a company’s failure to pay sums demanded by statutory demand between 1 March and 31 December 2020, although a statutory demand can still be served.

There is an exception where the creditor can show reasonable grounds for believing that coronavirus has not had a financial effect on the tenant company or that the tenant company would have been unable to pay its debts regardless of the financial effect of coronavirus – CIGA schedule 10 part 2.

For any advice on these issues, we can help – please contact our clerks on 020 7405 6114.

We will also be delivering webinars on this and similar issues. The links below provide more information and details of how to register.

More webinars are planned, so do check our website and LinkedIn page for updates.