Government considers further measures to protect tenants from eviction
This appears to potentially include specific advice for eviction cases taken to court, but it does not appear there is a plan to extend the possessions ban.
Housing minister Christopher Pincher said ending the ban was “an important step towards transitioning out of emergency measures and allowing the market to operate”.
He noted it was important to ensure all people – landlords and tenants – had access to justice in cases not related to Covid-19, such as anti-social behaviour and longstanding cases pre-dating lockdown.
Responding to a written question from Labour shadow cabinet office minister Helen Hayes asking whether an extension was planned, Pincher added that it was right for the government to consider how measures should adapt to the next stage of the coronavirus crisis.
“We recognise that when possession cases are being heard, further steps may be needed to protect the most vulnerable,” Pincher continued.
“Landlords must follow strict procedures if they want to gain possession of their property, depending on the type of tenancy agreement in place and the terms of it.
“The government has also been working closely with the judiciary, legal representatives, the advice sector and housing sector stakeholders through a working group convened by the Master of the Rolls.
“This group is considering arrangements that will mean that courts are better able to address the need for appropriate protection of all parties in the current legislative framework once the suspension of proceedings ends.”
In another written answer, Pincher revealed that as of 13 July, 13 entries had been added to the rogue landlords and property agents database this year.
Housing charity Shelter recently revealed an estimated 227,000 private tenants have fallen into arrears since the start of the pandemic, meaning they could lose their homes when the evictions ban ends on 23 August.