Earlier this year, the Commercial Rent (Coronavirus) Act 2022 introduced a 6-month moratorium on landlords’ remedies for the enforcement of protected rent debt. It also created an arbitration process for the assessment of this debt, following a referral by either a landlord or tenant.
The moratorium period has now expired, and the arbitration process was barely used. It is not clear why, but perhaps parties were reluctant to take the risk of an unpalatable decision or were concerned about publicly presenting information about the viability of their business. Landlord’s may have simply been waiting to see if their tenant’s made a referral. Some parties have preferred to negotiate a settlement outside of the arbitration process.
There remains an awful lot of Coronavirus rent debt out there, which is payable, and all enforcement options are now available to landlords.
What will happen next? I’m not sure. We may see a surge in enforcement action and tenant insolvency, or landlord’s may prefer to do a deal to keep their tenants trading and in occupation.
Whether you are a landlord or tenant, we can assist you to achieve your objective so feel free to get in touch with one of the Property Litigation team here at Dutton Gregory:
023 8021 3292