Tenants facing eviction in England are to be protected from losing their homes during the Christmas and New Year period, HM Courts and Tribunal has confirmed.

Between 13th December and 10th January no evictions should be scheduled or executed by a bailiff, although if landlords have an urgent eviction they need to book-in following the court process ‘around these times’ then they can alert the bailiff manager of the court in question.

But the precise dates around the UK appear to vary, depending on each court’s preferences – one reader has contacted us to reveal that a London court is quoting 10th December to 4th January.

This is similar to last year, when bailiffs were asked that they should not enforce other than in the ‘most serious circumstances’.

The festive amnesty occurs every year but was controversial last year because it came at the end of an extended blanket ban on bailiff evictions brought in during the worst months of the pandemic. Also, at the time Boris Johnson suggested that it should be extended.

“It is never nice to evict a tenant at the best of times but especially over Christmas,” says Paul Shamplina of Landlord Action (pictured).

“This amnesty is only for a month and I’m sure that landlords whether they are affected or not would expect such an amnesty during a period of the year when good cheer and kindness are to the fore – and in the wake of the Covid pandemic.”

As last year, it is expected that Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will follow suit and implement similar amnesties.

This year’s announcement in England has been rolled out informally through the courts, although officially the normal procedure is for the Lord Chancellor to inform the High Court Enforcements Officers Association which then informs its members.

But in previous years before Covid, the arrangement was more informal and under the radar – and shorter – but Covid appears to have changed that.

7 COMMENTS

  1. So the courts no longer enforce the law. But the landlord must suffer. Wrong, wrong, wrong and the reason that where possible landlords are switching to air b&b holiday lets. Let Tim Farron MP jnow this as he doesn’t get it and wines on about holiday lets in the lakes.

  2. Good cheer and kindness…………..FFS…..for a feckless rent defaulting tenant!!!!!!!!!!!

    So Govt determines to cause further loss to LL and also use them as FREE overdraft facility for feckless rent defaulting tenants.

    No wonder LL are selling up!!

    Allowing feckless rent defaulting tenants to cause massive losses to LL will only result in one thing.

    Fewer LL and letting properties.

    Australia doesn’t have a rent defaulting problem.

    Reason why is Police will remove any tenant if LL wishes after 14 days of rent default.

    Consequently most rent defaulting tenants are gone well before the Police arrive.

    Or the rent arrears are quickly paid..
    That saves the £9 billion of defaulted rent that UK LL suffer from annually.

    Can’t ever see such as sensible solution being introduced in the UK.

    Got to support feckless tenants at the expense of LL.

    Can’t have LL exploiting their property assets at the expense of feckless tenants can we!?

  3. Are you sure this is accurate, I have tried looking for this on Government websites and can find nothing, are you sure this isn’t misreporting from the scheme from last year.

    As far as I can see this is not happening this year.

    • HI Dan – thanks for your comment. The ‘xmas break’ is administered through the county courts and our evidence from paperwork shown to us from various courts shows it is being implemented – but it’s not centrally administered. Hope that helpd.

  4. All the legislation being bought out by the Govt is anti – private landlords. Tax breaks completely gone on Mortgage Interest now, new Electrical Safety Tests cost me £1600 by the time the electrcian had finished poking around, we are also expected to do Boarderforces job for them re tenants right to be in the country, new EPC minimum of C coming in, and now you cannot evict non paying tenants for months….. its a wonder anybody rents out property today. The result will just be less rental properties avaiable if this keep up.

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