As anticipated, the Government has announced this afternoon that for business tenants the Coronavirus Act protection from forfeiture will be extended until 30 September this year. As will the moratorium on the use of statutory demands or winding up to enforce payment of rent, which is to be included in the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill.
Alongside these measures, Ministers have collaborated with industry players to produce a voluntary code of practice for landlords and tenants of commercial property in all sectors, emphasizing the need to support economic recovery by acting reasonably in the pursuit of rent or rent concessions. Without including any means of enforcing observance, whether by carrot or stick, it remains to be seen whether this initiative will impact positively on behaviours on both sides. Nothing in the Code changes parties' contractual rights or their duties to other stakeholders.
If, despite the considerable amount of work and collaboration that has gone into its production, the Code is largely ignored the question then will be whether the Government will be inclined to extend current restrictions on landlords' remedies into the longer term or indeed consider further intervention into and regulation of commercial lease relationships.
The UK government will extend measures to prevent high street businesses facing eviction over summer New code provides support to shops and local firms planning their future recovery with their landlord Industry leaders back code and welcome measures to support affected businesses