COVID-19 and forfeiture of commercial leases: an update

Sarah Hamby, 1st July, 2020

Landlords of commercial business tenancies are now prohibited from forfeiting a lease for non-payment of rent until after 30 September 2020.

FURTHER UPDATE: 10 December 2020 - Extension of restrictions on recovering possession of commercial premises

In March 2020, a wide variety of emergency measures were introduced by the government in response to the coronavirus pandemic, including measures to protect commercial tenants who are unable to pay their rent.

Section 82 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 (‘The Act’) prohibits landlords of a relevant business tenancy from enforcing a right of re-entry or forfeiture for non-payment of rent, whether by proceedings or peaceable re-entry, during the “relevant period”.

The relevant period commenced on 26 March 2020 and was to end on 30 June 2020, unless extended. On 29 June 2020 the Business Tenancies (Protection from Forfeiture: Relevant Period) (Coronavirus) (England) Regulations 2020 (‘the Regulations) came into force. The Regulations extend the relevant period under section 82 of the Act to 30 September 2020.

This brings the protection for commercial tenants from forfeiture in line with other measures which have similarly been extended beyond June 2020.

To read our original blog on the temporary restriction from forfeiture, please click or tap here.

You may wish to read other articles we have written in relation to the temporary measures: -

Need advice? Get in touch today...

We are advising many clients (both landlord and tenant portfolios) daily on the issues raised in this article. If we can help you and your business then don't hesitate to get in touch with one of our specialists today:

Victoria Quinn (Partner, Litigation) Tel: 01482 590225 or via email:

Julia Williams (Partner, Litigation) Tel: 01482 590275 or via email:

Sarah Hamby (Chartered Legal Executive, Litigation) Tel: 01482 590105 or via email:

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