News & Blog

Further Temporary Legislation in Force

July 7, 2020

Category: News

We update you on the latest restrictions affecting the High Court Enforcement industry and outline exactly what we can and cannot do to help our clients during the Covid-19 period. We assure you, there is some positive news, so please read on and do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

Following the initial three-month block on commercial landlord sanctions and debt enforcement, the Government has introduced further temporary legislation to protect businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown measures. The Ministry of Justice has also extended the time period during which we are unable to enforce at residential addresses and on highways until 23 August 2020.

An amendment to Regulation 52 of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations (TCG) 2013, which came into force on 24 June 2020, extends the protection for commercial tenants from the use of the Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery (CRAR) process by increasing the amount of rent that must be due from an amount equal to 90 days’ rent to 189 days’. Normally, i.e. pre-Covid, this would be seven days. Protections from commercial lease forfeiture under the Coronavirus Act 2020 (amendment to Regulation 52 of TCG 2013) also remain in place until 30 September.

The good news is that the stay on residential possession proceedings (until 23 August 2020) and restrictions relating to commercial premises do not apply to claims against trespassers. This means that High Court Enforcement Offices like Andrew Wilson & Co still have the authority to remove trespassers during this period. We also retain our powers to enforce County Court Judgments (CCJs) against businesses and are able to recover assets if debtors are unable to pay.

While these restrictions provide welcome breathing space for those in financial difficulty including countless businesses as they slowly reopen, they are not so good for landlords who must now wait even longer to recover overdue rent or take possession of property.

Of course, these are unprecedented times and we understand why such legislation is necessary to protect the wider economy as well as limit contact between bailiffs and members of the public. In the meantime, we will continue to do everything within our power at Andrew Wilson & Co to help our clients whilst complying with the latest industry rules and regulations.

For residential claims or cases against individuals, we are urging clients to carry on sending their CCJs to us. Although we are unable to attend residential addresses currently, we are able to post out the Notice of Enforcement as well as follow up by letter, email and telephone – and we are still seeing some payers and some arrangements as a result.

Instructing us now also means that we will be ready to attend as soon as the ban is lifted. Waiting until the ban is lifted may delay your case even further as the court system will face a backlog.

You can read the latest temporary legislation, The Taking Control of Goods and Certification of Enforcement Agents (Amendment) (No. 2) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020, here. If you are still unsure how this affects you or your case, please contact our team for advice.

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