The current stay period that was due to end on the 23rd August has now been extended to 20th September. If you have served notice on your tenant you are still entitled to issue your claim in the Court but the stay simply means that the claim will remain in the court office and will not be dealt with until the stay is lifted. There is the possibility that the current stay will be extended.
All of this means that it is very difficult for landlords to find a way forward. As landlords will be aware under current legislation a notice to quit under section 21 only lasts for a period of 6 months, it is our understanding that this is extended to 10 months, but it does mean that landlords have to move quickly once the Notice has expired.
Another point to bear in mind is that unfortunately once the stay has been lifted, the courts will have a very significant back log of cases to deal with. It is our understanding that the courts will prioritise those cases where there are rent arrears of over 1 year, where there is serious anti-social behaviour or domestic violence. Other cases will simply have to wait in the queue.
One thing to keep in mind is that you can still issue a County Court claim to recover rent arrears, even though you cannot get back possession.
The whole area is an absolute muddle and we really do recommend that if you have any issues with your tenants that you seek urgent legal advice to see what the best way forward is. Please do not hesitate to contact us, we would be very happy to assist you. We can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01273 582271.