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BUSINESS TENANCIES UPDATE - PROTECTION EXTENDED TO BUSINESS TENANTS STRUGGLING TO PAY RENT.

Posted: 23rd September 2021

Previously the government introduced a moratorium on the eviction of commercial tenants for non-payment of rent until the end of June 2021. This has now been extended.

The government has now extended the current protections for commercial tenants against eviction to 25 March 2022, unless legislation is passed ahead of this.

Other restrictions have also been extended to the same date including, restricting the ability of landlords to seize goods owned by tenants in lieu of rent owed unless the tenant has more than 554 days’ worth of rent arrears.

The government will legislate to ringfence rent debt accrued during the pandemic by businesses affected by enforced closures. New laws and a Code of Practice are due to be published by government to assist landlords and tenants.

As soon as the new laws are passed, the commercial tenant protection measures will only apply to ringfenced arrears. This includes rent debt accrued from March 2020 by commercial tenants affected by COVID-19 business closures until restrictions for their sector are removed.

Currently after March 2022, Landlords will be able to evict tenants for the non-payment of rent accrued prior to March 2020 and non-payment for rent accrued after the end of restrictions for their sector and who have not been affected by business closures during this period.

Full details of the governments proposals can be found in their latest publication at Supporting businesses with commercial rent debts: policy statement - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

This article is intended for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon in place of specific legal advice. If you have a landlord and tenant related query then please do not hesitate to contact our litigation team for advice and assistance.

 


CASE LAW UPDATE - EMPLOYERS FAILURE TO FURLOUGH LED TO AN UNFAIR DISMISSAL

Posted: 26th August 2021

In the case of Mhindurwa v Lovingangels Care Limited (June 2021), the Employment Tribunal found that the employer had dismissed its employee unfairly on the basis that the employer had failed to give careful consideration to placing the employee on furlough.

 

The employee was a care assistant. She had just over two years’ employment at the time of her dismissal. She was employed to provide live-in care for an elderly woman who, in February 2020, moved into a care home. As a result of this, the employee’s role became redundant. In May 2020 she asked to be furloughed, but this was refused because her employer said there was no work for her.  She made redundant in July 2020.

 

The tribunal judge at paragraph 46 of the judgment stated  “ The respondent does not appear to have considered whether the claimant should be furloughed for a period of time to see what if any change there was in the availability of live-in care work or other work that the claimant could take on”

 

The tribunal judge at paragraph 48 of the judgment expressed their view; “I am of the view that the failure to give consideration to the possibility of furlough and the failure to offer the claimant a proper appeal render the claimant’s dismissal unfair”

 

The tribunal found in the employee’s favour and the redundancy was deemed to be an unfair dismissal. Employers should make sure that consideration of the furlough scheme is factored into to any redundancy decision, prior  to dismissal.

 

This article is intended for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon in place of specific legal advice. If you have an employment query then please do not hesitate to contact our litigation team for advice and assistance.


EMPLOYMENT LAW UPDATE – CHANGES TO THE FURLOUGH SCHEME FROM 01 AUGUST 2021

Posted: 2nd August 2021

From 01 August 2021, the level of grant payable by the government reduced to 60% of wages for hours not works (capped at £1,875.00 per month for hours not worked). 

 

Employers must then “top up” employee wages by at least 20% (up to £625.00), resulting in the employee continuing to receive 80% of their wages (up to £2,500.00). The employer must continue to pay national insurance and pension contributions during this period.

 

Employers can choose to pay employees more than the 80%, if they wish to do so however, the government will not fund the additional cost.

This article is intended for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon in place of specific legal advice. If you have an employment query then please do not hesitate to contact our litigation team for advice and assistance.


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