10 Sep 2020

A recent change to legislation in Wales concerning commercial landlords and their ability to forfeit business tenancies for non-payment of rent has been announced.

The Business Tenancies (Extension of Protection from Forfeiture etc.) (Wales) (Coronavirus) (No. 2) Regulations 2020 extend the current protections until the 31 December 2020.

Section 82 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 prevents landlords from using a right of re-entry to bring a business tenancy to an end on the basis of non-payment of rent during the "relevant period" as defined in the legislation.

Currently this "relevant period" is set to come to an end on the 30 September 2020. The newest Regulations represent the second time that the "relevant period" has been extended following an increase in positive coronavirus cases nationwide.

It is important to stress that these Regulations only apply to business tenancies in Wales. While the "relevant period" has been extended in Wales until the end of the year, the current position for English tenancies is that protection against forfeiture will cease to have effect on 30 September 2020. However, it remains to be seen whether the government will also similarly extend protection in England in the coming days.