Eviction Ban in England and Wales Extended till Feb 21


Read Time 2 minutes, 57 seconds

England and Wales followed suit after the Scottish government announced that the temporary ban on evictions will be extended till the end of March.

The UK government recently confirmed that the current ban on evictions will be extended for a further six months in England and Wales to support struggling tenants during the pandemic.

The move, which came as a response to charities demanding greater financial relief for tenants, means that bailiffs would not be able to serve eviction notices in England until 21 February 2021.

The Context

A ban on evictions and bailiff action was placed in both England and Wales last month. Also called the ‘Christmas Truce ’, the temporary ban was imposed by the UK government to keep landlords from evicting people from rented properties over Christmas.

This ban was set to come to a close on the second week of the new year. However, recently the UK government extended the ban for a further six weeks till 21st February after the Scottish government announced that it will be extending its own ban till the end of March.

Protecting and Supporting Renters

The eviction ban was initially proposed to ensure the safety and well-being of renters throughout the Covid-19 outbreak. The goal was to protect financially vulnerable tenants and make sure that they had access to shelter and safe homes throughout the pandemic.

The current ban applies to every council area in England as well as Wales. The Government has also pledged to offer additional funds worth £10 m to assist councils in supporting the homeless.

This step was taken after mounting pressure from homeless charities. Previously, the charities had called on the government to protect tenants who were being threatened with evictions during a global pandemic.

Why Was the Ban Extended?

The ban was extended because the pandemic is far from over. While confirming this, Housing Minister Robert Jenrick said, “At the start of this pandemic we made sure that the most vulnerable in society were protected. This winter, we are continuing in this vein and redoubling our efforts to help those most in need,”

It is worth mentioning that the eviction ban was introduced for the first time during the lockdown in March 2020. After that, the UK was devastated by a winter wave of the virus, made worse by a new strain of COVID-19.

As cases continued to peak, the government imposed a third lockdown  during which calls to extend protection to tenants and homeless individuals gained greater traction.

Is there a UK-wide Ban on Evictions?

Yes, right now there is a UK-wide ban on evictions and bailiff action. Landlords cannot evict tenants in England and Wales until 21 Feb 2021.

The Scottish government has also imposed an eviction ban that would last till the end of March.

The Irish government had already announced an extension in the eviction ban in Northern Ireland during summers last year. This ban is also set to end by the beginning of April 2021.

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