The government has provided important clarification about the enforcement of possession cases during the second national lockdown.
In a letter to the High Court Enforcement Officers Association the Justice Secretary, Robert Buckland, has confirmed that during the lockdown there will be no enforcement of Possession Orders except for the most serious cases.
These will include those related to illegal trespassing and squatting and tenants engaged in anti-social behaviour, fraud or deception. The Government has also confirmed that it will bring forward an exemption from the enforcement ban for cases related to extreme pre-COVID rent arrears.
Ben Beadle, chief executive at the National Residential Landlords Association, said: “The vast majority of landlords who have had tenants affected due to the pandemic have been working constructively to support them. We continue to encourage and support such action.
“However, in a minority of cases renters have abused the protections afforded by the recent ban on repossessions, causing significant hardship. It is therefore important that the Government recognises that in the most serious cases enforcement action must continue.”
Timothy Douglas, policy and campaigns manager at ARLA Propertymark, added: “The UK Government has yet again extended the ban on evictions in England and this will come as a further blow to our members. It will cause further distress on landlords who are currently dealing with ongoing rental arrears and add further pressure on the courts to manage the back log of cases.”