UK extends ban on evicting tenants during coronavirus outbreak

FILE PHOTO: Britain’s Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick speaks at the daily COVID-19 briefing at 10 Downing Street in London, Britain May 31, 2020. Pippa Fowles/10 Downing Street/Handout via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) – The British government said on Friday it would extend a ban on evicting tenants from social or private rented accommodation in England and Wales by two months to Aug. 23 due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The government said the extension, which will take the total length of the moratorium to five months, would give greater protection to millions of renters who may be experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic.

“Eviction hearings will not be heard in courts until the end of August and no-one will be evicted from their home this summer due to coronavirus,” housing minister Robert Jenrick said in a statement.

The government said landlords and tenants should work together and exhaust all possible options, such as flexible payment plans, to ensure cases only end up in court as an absolute last resort.

Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; editing by Stephen Addison

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