COVID-19 Advice

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Businesses, the self-employed, and employees have all faced many challenges as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. We have created this page to help you keep up-to-date with the current legal position with advice from our expert team. It will be regularly refreshed as and when new updates are issued by the government and other regulatory bodies.

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Advice for businesses

This section provides legal information, guidance and tips for businesses generally as a result of issues arising due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We hope the information provided here will help business owners make informed decisions regarding the day to day running of their business.

Bounce Back Loan Scheme : Top-ups and repayment options

Bounce Back Loan Scheme : Top-ups and repayment options

Further to our blog discussing the key points and aims of the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (‘BBLS’), businesses first began to receive loans under BBLS in May 2020 and the first repayments (subject to any repayment holidays) are due from May 2021 onwards. On 10 November 2020 the government announced that participating lenders are able..

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3 practical legal tips for business management following COVID-19/ Brexit trade disruption

3 practical legal tips for business management following COVID-19/ Brexit trade disruption

As we march inexorably towards the rather grim milestone of a full year under various forms of COVID-related legal business restrictions, having at the same time faced the consequences of the end of the Brexit transition period, it is hardly surprising that a large number of limited liability businesses are looking toward the end of..

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Holding annual general meetings during COVID-19 pandemic – Updated 17 December 2020

Holding annual general meetings during COVID-19 pandemic – Updated 17 December 2020

The rules of some companies and other organisations require them to hold annual general meetings. Since lockdown began in March, those organisations have grappled with how to comply with these requirements whilst observing the government’s lockdown rules and subsequent Coronavirus restrictions. Legislation was finally introduced on 25 June 2020 to bring in temporary changes on..

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What options are available in debt recovery for creditors now that the CIGA temporary measures have been extended?

What options are available in debt recovery for creditors now that the CIGA temporary measures have been extended?

Debt recovery for creditors during this pandemic is harder than ever. The Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act (CIGA) came into force on 26 June 2020 and introduced a number of temporary and permanent reforms. The objective being to support businesses and help the economy during this pandemic. The original measures were due to expire on 30..

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Do I still need to comply with GDPR during the pandemic?

Do I still need to comply with GDPR during the pandemic?

GDPR compliance is mandatory regardless of the Coronavirus pandemic and these unprecedented times we find ourselves in. So the law remains the same, but how will it be enforced? The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has changed its enforcement strategy in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In May this year the ICO drew attention to its..

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Terminating a franchise agreement – a COVID-19 update

Terminating a franchise agreement – a COVID-19 update

Terminating a franchise agreement is sadly, what some franchisees are considering at this present time as well as looking at other options under their franchise agreement. Last week I hosted a franchisee legal surgery with the British Franchise Association (bfa). Unfortunately, the common thread was franchisees finding themselves in a very difficult financial position due..

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Virtual director and shareholder meetings: considerations for private companies

Virtual director and shareholder meetings: considerations for private companies

During the COVID-19 pandemic, necessary director and shareholder meetings will be a key concern for many companies. Shareholder annual general meetings and directors board meetings There are a number of points for private limited companies to consider in light of holding annual general meetings and directors board meetings during this challenging time, some of which..

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Coronavirus : What are the issues when moving a business online?

Coronavirus : What are the issues when moving a business online?

Thinking about moving a business online? With the Coronavirus forcing businesses to close their doors as governments around the world have either banned or limited social contact, many businesses, freelancers and self-employed people are focusing on turning their businesses online. As the business landscape changes for so many and uncertainties turn into new realities, businesses..

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Force majeure – a guide for businesses

Force majeure – a guide for businesses

In this guide for businesses, we explain what a force majeure is, whether the Coronavirus pandemic is a force majeure event, what a suitable clause looks like in a document and how to give notice to a contracting party. With the country now in lockdown for the foreseeable future, more and more businesses grapple with..

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Cancelled events due to Coronavirus – Where do you stand?

Cancelled events due to Coronavirus – Where do you stand?

What are the effects if you have to cancel an event due to the Coronavirus? All types of events, from the biggest international concerts and conferences to the smallest community gatherings have been cancelled or postponed to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. The impact of such cancellations is wide ranging and may result in significant..

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) : Settling commercial disputes and disagreements

Coronavirus (COVID-19) : Settling commercial disputes and disagreements

Settling commercial disputes and disagreements at any time can be daunting, but during any economic crisis such as the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, tensions can and do rise between businesses eager to protect their respective interests and those of their shareholders and employees. Supply chain issues have arisen leading to the need to renegotiate trading terms,..

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Charities & not for profit

In this section we will keep you updated on any announcements coming from government or other regulatory bodies as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. You may also find our other sections helpful as many of the topics covered will also affect you as a charity or not-for-profit organisation.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) : Financial aid for charities

Construction & Projects

This section is aimed at the construction industry and the effect that the Coronavirus lockdown is having on the industry and on-going projects.

Coronavirus impact on construction projects

Coronavirus impact on construction projects

(Co-written by Fainche Whelan, Solicitor and Claire Egerton, Partner) The Coronavirus impact on construction projects means it is necessary to carefully consider the relevant contract provisions vis a vis the current position with the works. The construction industry, amongst many others, is feeling the effects of Coronavirus. Whilst the government has permitted sites to remain..

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Are construction sites back to work and what is the new ‘normal’?

Are construction sites back to work and what is the new ‘normal’?

More construction sites are re-opening, starting work or increasing capacity each day, just less than 2 weeks since Boris Johnson announced the first steps towards lifting the UK’s unprecedented lockdown. They say it takes around 3 weeks to form a new habit but can the construction industry move that fast and will it need to,..

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Employers/Employees/Self-employed

This section provides legal information, guidance and tips for employers and employees regarding employment related issues arising as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic.

The COVID-19 Roadmap and the 2021 Budget : What does it mean for employers?

The COVID-19 Roadmap and the 2021 Budget : What does it mean for employers?

Following the announcement by the Government of it’s COVID-19 roadmap out of lockdown and the subsequent budget announcement confirming the extension of furlough, many businesses are now considering how the gradual opening up of restrictions will affect their workforce. What does the COVID-19 roadmap  and the 2021 budget mean for employers? We look below at..

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Can employers force employees to have the COVID-19 vaccine?

Can employers force employees to have the COVID-19 vaccine?

At the time of writing, the government has announced that every adult will be offered the COVID-19 vaccine by 31 July 2021. The swift progress of administering vaccines has led to topical discussion about whether employers can force employees to receive the vaccine. Recent headlines of “no jab no job” have increased this debate. What..

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The Extended Furlough Scheme – Updated as of 3 March 2021

The Extended Furlough Scheme – Updated as of 3 March 2021

On 3 March 2021 the government announced that the Extended Furlough Scheme is now being extended again until 30 September 2021. This update seeks to provide clarity on the consequences of the Extended Furlough Scheme and any differences it holds to the previous furlough scheme. Update to the Extended Furlough Scheme as at 3 March..

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Changes to “shielding” – the implications for employers

Changes to “shielding” – the implications for employers

Following the second national lockdown across the country from 5 November, those who are identified as ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ have received a letter from the NHS with new shielding measures. These shielding measures will apply for 4 weeks up to 2 December when the country will then look to lift the lockdown and return to..

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Furlough Scheme – Changes to contributions from July 2021

Furlough Scheme – Changes to contributions from July 2021

On Wednesday 3 March 2021, the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak announced further changes to the furlough scheme. These changes extend the furlough scheme until 30 September 2021 and slowly reduce the contributions payable from July 2021. What are the changes to the furlough scheme? The changes to the furlough scheme announced on 3 March 2021 are..

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Employment Law FAQs

Employment Law FAQs

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Permitting a worker to break their self-isolation: new regulations and what this means for employers

Permitting a worker to break their self-isolation: new regulations and what this means for employers

New self-isolation regulations to curb the recent rise in Coronavirus infections (announced at midnight on Sunday 27 September) confirm it is now an offence for an employer to knowingly permit a worker to break their self-isolation.  What are the new self-isolation regulations? The new self-isolation regulations are called the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (Self-Isolation) (England)..

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The Job Support Scheme – New employee retention initiative

The Job Support Scheme – New employee retention initiative

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak recently announced a new Job Support Scheme to assist employers in keeping staff in their jobs during his speech on the government’s winter economy plan. The Job Support Scheme has been updated twice since it was originally announced, firstly on 12 October 2020 and most recently on 22 October 2020 when..

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Coronavirus – Working from home again?

Coronavirus – Working from home again?

In response to the concerning rise in new cases of Coronavirus in recent weeks, the Prime Minister made an announcement to the nation which introduces new restrictions to suppress the spread of the virus. Importantly, the government has confirmed the reinstatement of the policy that requires those who can work from home to do so…

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Job retention bonus scheme: Update as at 2 October 2020

Job retention bonus scheme: Update as at 2 October 2020

On 2 October 2020, the government produced new guidance relating to the Job Retention Bonus Scheme. This is also supported by a new Treasury Direction on the Job Retention scheme and some useful practical examples to assist employers.  We have outlined the key points for employers based on the new information known as at 2 October..

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Furloughed employees to receive full redundancy payments

Furloughed employees to receive full redundancy payments

Furloughed employees will be entitled to receive redundancy payments at their normal rate of pay, rather than the reduced furloughed rate. This change on redundancy pay was announced by the government on 30 July and applies with immediate effect from today, 31 July 2020. What is the change to redundancy payments? Redundancy payments are calculated..

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Returning to the workplace – What should employers be considering?

Returning to the workplace – What should employers be considering?

Returning to the workplace was a topic of the Prime Minister’s announcement on Friday 17 July, confirming that more easing of lockdown restrictions is to take place in the foreseeable future. In particular, it was confirmed that, from 1 August, the government is going to “give employers more discretion and ask them to make decisions..

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Employees returning from Spain and self-isolation

Employees returning from Spain and self-isolation

The government announced on 25 July 2020 that if you are returning from Spain to England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland on or after 26 July 2020 you will need to self-isolate for two weeks. The rules apply to travellers arriving from anywhere in Spain – including the Canary and Balearic Islands and will apply..

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Social distancing in the workplace – What does this mean for employers?

Social distancing in the workplace – What does this mean for employers?

What does social distancing in the workplace mean for employers after the Prime Minister announced the latest round of plans to further ease the lockdown restrictions on 23 June? One important feature of his speech was when he stated that “from now on we will ask people to follow guidance on social contact instead of..

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Settlement Agreements: A Guide

Settlement Agreements: A Guide

What are settlement agreements and why are they beneficial? Employment Solicitor Sarah Hayes takes us through a guide to what should you need to know and the practical steps that need to be taken for them to be legally binding.   Show notes 00:28 What are settlement agreements? Sarah defines what it means 00:48 What..

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Settlement Agreements – Frequently asked questions

Settlement Agreements – Frequently asked questions

As an employee you may find yourself presented with a settlement agreement. In this blog we answer the most frequently asked questions we receive and also give you some practical guidance on what to do if you are presented with a settlement agreement. Settlement Agreements As a starting point, we outline what a settlement agreement..

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Coronavirus : Redundancies and collective consultation

Coronavirus : Redundancies and collective consultation

There are several important steps that employers need to take when entering into a collective consultation process in order to make staff redundant. This forms the second part to my recent blog on redundancies and individual consultation. In my recent blog, I outline the key parts of a fair redundancy process, including what the three..

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NHS Test and Trace – entitlement to statutory sick pay

NHS Test and Trace – entitlement to statutory sick pay

On 27 May 2020, the new ‘Test and Trace’ system was launched in England with the aim of helping ‘return life to normal, in a way that is safe and protects our NHS and social care.’ In line with this new system, entitlement to SSP has today been extended, so that anyone who has been..

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Coronavirus : Redundancies and individual consultation

Coronavirus : Redundancies and individual consultation

Making redundancies will unfortunately be the harsh reality for many employers due to the impact of Covid-19. For those employers who, over the coming weeks and months, find themselves in the difficult position of having to making compulsory redundancies, it is crucial that they follow a fair process. My colleague, David Roath, recently wrote an..

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Guidance on testing workers for Coronavirus

Guidance on testing workers for Coronavirus

We set out guidance for employers on testing workers for Coronavirus in light of the recent extension of eligibility to be tested. It was announced on 28 April 2020 that all employees whose work cannot be done from home can now be tested for Coronavirus, if they have symptoms. They are able to make an..

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How to avoid redundancies post lock-down

How to avoid redundancies post lock-down

How to avoid redundancies post lockdown has been brought into focus since Boris Johnson announced the broad roadmap to take us out of lockdown yesterday evening. We know there’s a long and hazardous path the country needs to travel and the impact on the economy is going to be huge. We’re told to expect a..

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) : How are Employment Tribunal hearings operating?

Coronavirus (COVID-19) : How are Employment Tribunal hearings operating?

The Employment Tribunal has released information about how it will operate during the current pandemic. The overriding objective of the Employment Tribunal is to deal with cases in a manner which is both fair and just. Like many organisations, the Employment Tribunal is moving to online modes of working wherever possible, although has acknowledged that..

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COVID-19 : The legal issues of working from home

COVID-19 : The legal issues of working from home

In this blog, we look at the legal issues of working from home for staff and how employers can facilitate this change to ensure their business runs as smoothly as possible during the Coronavirus pandemic. Our blog “COVID-19 : Practical issues of working from home” covers the practical side. Legal issues an employer needs to..

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COVID-19 : Practical issues of working from home

COVID-19 : Practical issues of working from home

This blog looks at the practical issues of working from home an employer needs to think about to make home working a success for the business and their staff.  Although many businesses already accommodate home working, for many more it is a new and potentially scary concept. Both employees and managers have had to adapt..

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Family / Private Client

In this section we provide advice and guidance on matters affecting families and private clients due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

COVID-19: Guidance for child arrangements during self-isolation

COVID-19: Guidance for child arrangements during self-isolation

Child arrangements during self-isolation is a concern for many families. The House of Commons library has recently updated its briefing paper and responded to some key questions concerning the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on separated families and access to children. The updated paper was published on 21 December 2020. Guidance for child arrangements during..

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Living together whilst separated : Can it work?

Living together whilst separated : Can it work?

Yes living together whilst separated can work.  This blog sets out why people may choose to take this route and tips on how to assist with this arrangement. Reasons why people choose living together whilst separated With the current global difficulties and the impact of the Coronavirus, many people have been stuck at home. Some..

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What is the Coronavirus impact on financial settlements?

What is the Coronavirus impact on financial settlements?

The Coronavirus impact on financial settlements is, unsurprisingly, a question many of my clients have asked me in the last few weeks, and is an issue which requires serious consideration. I would say that great caution should be applied whether it is a case of considering reopening a final order recently made; attempting to renegotiate..

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Are there any legal implications of living together during Coronavirus lockdown?

Are there any legal implications of living together during Coronavirus lockdown?

Yes, there are potential legal implications of living together during Coronavirus lockdown if one of you is a property owner. As an unmarried couple, your claims against each other are limited as you do not have the same rights as a married couple. However, if financial or other significant contributions are made by a non-owning..

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Child arrangements during Coronavirus lockdown

Child arrangements during Coronavirus lockdown

Child arrangements during Coronavirus lockdown is a very worrying concern. For families with young children, there is a whole host of difficulties that wouldn’t even occur to others. Not just the challenge of attempting to home-school little ones whilst simultaneously working full-time, but also the never-ending “what nextness” of toddlers needing to be picked up,..

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Coronavirus; unable to make maintenance payments?

Coronavirus; unable to make maintenance payments?

Being able to make maintenance payments during the Coronavirus pandemic may be something you are worried about, either because you pay child or spousal maintenance to your former partner or spouse or you are in receipt of maintenance, and are understandably worried about how Coronavirus (COVID-19) may impact these payments. Maintenance payments can broadly be..

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Funding/Loans

This section covers funding and loan facilities the government has put in place for businesses and education establishments.

New Recovery Loan Scheme launches on 6 April 2021

New Recovery Loan Scheme launches on 6 April 2021

Today’s announcement by the Chancellor that a replacement facility (Recovery Loan Scheme) is to be made available will be a welcome development for businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The scheme launches on 6 April and is open until 31 December, subject to review and loans will be available through a network of accredited lenders. The..

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Bounce Back Loan Scheme : Top-ups and repayment options

Bounce Back Loan Scheme : Top-ups and repayment options

Further to our blog discussing the key points and aims of the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (‘BBLS’), businesses first began to receive loans under BBLS in May 2020 and the first repayments (subject to any repayment holidays) are due from May 2021 onwards. On 10 November 2020 the government announced that participating lenders are able..

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Financial support schemes available for SMEs during COVID-19

Financial support schemes available for SMEs during COVID-19

There are a number of government financial support schemes available for small to medium sized businesses in the current climate. As of 5 November 2020, the deadline for applications to the BBLS, CBILS and Future Fund has been extended to 31 January 2021. Please note that the CBILS cannot be used in conjunction with any..

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Future Fund Loan Scheme

Future Fund Loan Scheme

On 20 April 2020, the Chancellor announced the government’s plans to offer the £500m Future Fund Loan Scheme.  The scheme went live on 20 May 2020. Lead investors are now able to submit applications via an online portal until the end of September 2020. The government, in partnership with the British Business Bank, is aiming..

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Financial support for education providers

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Financial support for education providers

This blog discusses the financial support for education providers during the Coronavirus crisis, with particular focus on how education establishments with mixed income from (government and commercial sources) can expect to approach the current situation in light of the financial difficulties raised by the Coronavirus pandemic. Following a government announcement in March, schools have been..

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Bounce back loans for smaller businesses

Bounce back loans for smaller businesses

As part of the ongoing response to the Coronavirus pandemic, the government has announced a new scheme for the UK’s smaller businesses, the bounce back loan scheme, which will run alongside the existing Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme already available for businesses. This short note discusses the key points and aims of the scheme. What..

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Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Following changes announced on 19 May by HM Treasury several changes will take effect from 26 May. The maximum amount available through the scheme to borrowers and its group has been increased from £50m to £200m. Both term loans and revolving credit facilities over £50m will be offered by CLBILS lenders which have secured additional..

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The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

In response to concerns raised by the business community since the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme was launched, the Chancellor has extended the scheme so that all viable small businesses affected by COVID-19, and not just those unable to secure regular commercial financing, will now be eligible. Insufficient security is no longer a condition to..

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Landlord & Tenant

This section is aimed at keeping landlords and tenants up-to-date with current issues arising as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Possession Orders – A little good news for landlords at last?

Possession Orders – A little good news for landlords at last?

YOU CAN NOW ENFORCE A POSSESSION ORDER WHERE THE CLAIM WAS BASED ON SIX MONTHS’ RENT ARREARS Throughout the pandemic, the government have made it increasingly difficult for landlords to gain possession of their properties, by increasing the periods of notice required for s21 notices and for the majority of s8 notices and by instigating..

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How Coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions have affected residential tenancies – updated 6 January 2021

How Coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions have affected residential tenancies – updated 6 January 2021

The Coronavirus Act 2020 (“the Act”) came into force on 26 March 2020 substantially affecting the ability of landlords to recover possession of properties in England and Wales. Key points for landlords and tenants on residential tenancies We set out below the key points to note for residential landlords and tenants in relation to residential..

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Residential property : How COVID-19 restrictions have affected notices seeking possession

Residential property : How COVID-19 restrictions have affected notices seeking possession

2020 has seen an unprecedented amount of changes to the rules that govern serving notices in order to recover possession of residential property. Landlords face significant delays in recovering possession from residential tenants, starting with having to serve in most cases 6 months’ notice before issuing proceedings. As a result it has never been more..

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COVID-19 update on recovering possession of rented property – updated 16.02.21

COVID-19 update on recovering possession of rented property – updated 16.02.21

Recovering possession of rented property is by no means an easy task to achieve right now for landlords after the Coronavirus Act 2020 and Civil Procedure Rules were changed to bring in tight restrictions on how courts should manage and consider possession claims. At the start of the pandemic all possession claims were stayed completely..

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Landlord’s consent to tenants working or running a business from home

Landlord’s consent to tenants working or running a business from home

There has never been a time where so many people are working or running a business from home. But what if you are a tenant?  Working or running a business from home if you are a tenant This article looks at whether it is okay for landlords to allow their tenants to work or run..

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Commercial landlords’ remedies for unpaid rent

Commercial landlords’ remedies for unpaid rent

On the 22 February, David Eminton and Nicola Davies from the Paris Smith Property Litigation team gave a talk on what options are available to landlords to recover unpaid rent during the pandemic to Savills Hotel, Leisure and Trade teams. With some statistics reporting something in the region of £3 billion of rent arrears in..

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Winding up petitions for unpaid rent – commercial leases – Updated 15 October

Winding up petitions for unpaid rent – commercial leases – Updated 15 October

The use of statutory demands and winding up petitions on commercial tenants has been severely restricted by insolvency legislation. This note considers the limitations placed on landlords faced with non-paying corporate tenants during the Coronavirus pandemic. Our earlier blog, Coronavirus (COVID-19) and commercial leases, set out the implications of the Coronavirus Act for commercial leases…

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Coronavirus : What are the options for commercial tenants struggling to pay rent?

Coronavirus : What are the options for commercial tenants struggling to pay rent?

There are a number of options available to commercial tenants struggling to pay their rent but possibly the first step to take should be to secure such funding as is being made available by the government including the furlough scheme and the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme for small and medium-sized businesses. There are also..

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) and commercial leases – updated 15 October

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and commercial leases – updated 15 October

Due to the Coronavirus pandemic tenants with commercial leases are having a difficult time and consequently landlords too. We know anecdotally that some tenants with large portfolios have already approached their landlords and agreed rent concessions. Options available to landlords and tenants for commercial leases This blog explains the implications of the Coronavirus Act for..

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) : Issues landlords and tenants should consider

Coronavirus (COVID-19) : Issues landlords and tenants should consider

(co-written by Tamsin Simmonds, Edward Watson and Henry Barker) In this blog we look at issues landlords and tenants should consider in lieu of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) including deferring obligations in a commercial lease. We also consider the importance of properly documenting any such agreements to avoid costly and unintended consequences. This blog follows on..

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Property & Planning

In this section we aim to provide legal advice and guidance on property and planning related matters brought about by COVID-19.

Land Registry execution of deeds

Land Registry execution of deeds

The rules for Land Registry execution of deeds during the Coronavirus pandemic have temporarily been amended. Execution of Deeds for Registration purposes at HM Land Registry  – Practice Guide 8 In response to the current climate HMLR have made a temporary change to Practice guide 8 and the execution of deeds for registration purposes. The..

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Coronavirus – Keeping the planning system moving and participation in decision making

Coronavirus – Keeping the planning system moving and participation in decision making

New legislation and guidance continue to emerge, seeking to ensure the continued progress of planning applications through the different stages of the planning system. Planning system changes We set out below the changes, whether temporary or permanent, that have been put in place regarding the planning system since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic. An..

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Planning for the future

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Planning for the future

In these strange and unprecedented times, many businesses are unable to continue to operate in their usual way. Whilst we do not know exactly what the future holds, or how long the current situation may last, this period offers time to plan ahead and consider future options for when normal service resumes. Business owners may..

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Frequently asked questions

In this section we have included all the Coronavirus related frequently asked questions we have received. If there is a question you have that is not covered in this section please do contact us and we will try our best to answer it for you.

Business FAQs

Construction FAQs

Conveyancing FAQs

Education FAQs

Employment Law FAQs

Family Law FAQs

Immigration FAQs

Landlord and Tenant FAQs

Wills and Trusts FAQs

Our COVID-19 Response

We have reviewed and analysed the strength of our business continuity plan. In line with the Government’s strategy we have and are planning for all scenarios and working hard to protect our clients and the community in which we live and work.

We have always treated as a priority the health and wellbeing of our staff, clients and communities. This is right and we continue to do so. We have our own “Cobra Committee” of senior leaders from the core business areas in the firm monitoring developments on a daily basis, and responding to them. We are following the guidance of Public Health England (PHE) and the reports of the World Health Organisation.

We are here to support all our clients and contacts effectively and efficiently throughout this time. We have the technology to continue to meet our clients’ needs and deliver what is required. All our teams in Paris Smith share the same sense of deep commitment of service to our clients and our valued connections. All our professional staff and secretaries are able to work remotely. We can conduct meetings by telephone conferencing.

We have postponed events for the coming months and arranged for meetings wherever possible to be conducted by telephone. Hand gel is available throughout our offices and all visitors to our offices are asked to use the gel and sign a declaration as to their state of health to minimise the risk of inadvertently introducing the virus to any of our offices.

We shall play our part in helping our clients and our communities address the challenges faced by the virus. We are here to help you, your families and your businesses through this crisis and beyond. Do call upon our expertise and network connections if only as a sounding board for ideas which you may have.

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