Real Estate

NON-DOMESTIC RATES RELIEF TO ALLEVIATE THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON BUSINESSES

Non-domestic rates, also called business rates, are taxes paid on non-domestic properties to help pay for local council services. Non-domestic rates are based on the Rateable Value of a Premises. The Rateable Value is determined by the Scottish Assessors, who are an independent body.

Each year in the budget the Scottish Government sets the tax rate along with any reliefs that may be available. Read more…

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THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON MISSIVES

Everyone and every sector has been impacted by COVID-19 and the property market has been no exception. Whilst in the first lockdown which started on 23 March 2020, the property market stopped, that has not been the case in this second lockdown that we are all currently facing.

Unlike the first lockdown, the property market is still moving, the Registers of Scotland have kept the application register open for registering new title and interest in property in the Land Register and so transactions can still complete. Read more…

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THE COMMERCIAL LANDLORD IN A PANDEMIC: WHAT TO DO ABOUT LEASE ARREARS

It will come as no surprise to hear that a large number of commercial landlords are becoming increasingly concerned about accruing or ongoing arears which have arisen (or been exacerbated) by tenants struggling in the current commercial climate.

The government has introduced legislation which has an impact on this [The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 (“the Coronavirus Act”)] and have also released some guidelines seeking to address and recognise the inevitable conflict that has arisen between landlords and tenants [The Code of Practice for Landlords and Tenants of Commercial Property (“the Code”)]. The requirements of the Act are mandatory, whereas the Code is advisory. Read more…

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THE RULE OF 14 WHEN TENANTS FALL BEHIND WITH RENT

For many businesses and sectors, 30th September 2020 was supposed to be the end date of the plethora of legislative changes brought into force by the Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020. However, as a result of secondary legislation, the Coronavirus (Scotland) Acts (Amendment of Expiry Dates) Regulations 2020, means the expiry date of 30th September has been extended to 31st March 2021.

For commercial landlords, this means the continuation of a 14 week minimum notice period before being able to evict tenants for non-payment of rent or other sums due. Previously, the minimum notice period was 14 days. So what does this mean for businesses operating as landlords?  Read the full blog.

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COVID-19: Home Renovations in the Red Zone

By Sydney Warshaw and Sara Laraichi, from our Business Law Practice Group

October 6, 2020 — Since October 1, Greater Montreal, Québec City and several parts of Quebec are plunged into the “red zone”. This represents the highest alert level for COVID-19 and came with several accompanying restrictions. Unlike in March, when the provincial lockdown was imposed uniformly across most sectors of society, this lockdown features a series of unique rules depending on economic sector and housing arrangements.

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MARKET BOOM IN THE WAKE OF NEW LBTT RATES

BACKGROUND

‘Unprecedented’ is surely the word of choice this year.  In a matter of months, coronavirus has redefined the way we work, live and interact with one another.  The various restrictions imposed to try and reduce the spread have profoundly impacted the global economy and things are almost certain to get worse before they improve.  In the midst of all of this, there is, however, some cause for optimism in the residential property market in Scotland where there has been a sharp rise in house prices with few properties staying on the market for long before successful sales are achieved. Read more…

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Landlords Should Reconsider Mitigating Damages with COVID-19 Relief Programs

By Sydney Warshaw, from our Business Law Practice Group

August 7, 2020 — A series of recent Superior Court decisions demonstrate that participation in the federal government’s financial relief programs to help tenants and landlords in the wake of COVID-19 may not be as discretionary as landlords initially thought.

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Massachusetts Governor Extends Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

On July 21, 2020, Governor Charlie Baker extended the current moratorium on evictions and foreclosures during the COVID-19 pandemic for an additional sixty (60) days, until October 17, 2020. That moratorium was set in “An Act Providing for a Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures During the COVID-19 Emergency” (the Act), signed into law on April 20, 2020, and was due to expire August 18, 2020. The Act provided the Governor with the authority to postpone the expiration date in increments up to 90 days.

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CAN SUSUPENSION OF RENT DUE TO LOCKDOWN BE CLAIMED BY A LESSEE?

Judgment: Ramanand & Ors. Vs. Dr. Girish Soni & Anr. [CM APPL. 10847/2020]

Forum: Hon’ble High Court of Delhi (“DHC”)

Judgment delivered on: May 21, 2020

Act/LawIndian Contract Act, 1872 (“ICA”) and Transfer of Property Act, 1882 (“TPA”)

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CANADA EMERGENCY COMMERCIAL RENT ASSISTANCE UPDATE: RELIEF IS ALMOST HERE, BUT WILL EVERYONE PLAY BALL?

General Update

On May 1, 2020, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (“CMHC“) provided its update on the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program (“CECRA“) as the body charged with CECRA’s implementation and administration1. On May 14, 2020, additional details were provided by CMHC on eligibility for the program and on the application process2. On May 19, 2020, CMHC provided guidance on how the application process will proceed, and provided sample documents for commercial property owners to review in advance of the application portal opening in mid-May 20203. Further, CMHC has included reasons compelling landlords to apply for the program (as it has not been generally well-received by landlords) including, but not limited to, the lack of rental income for a landlord if a tenant cannot afford to pay its rent (i.e., 75% of rent is better than nothing) and the costs of finding new tenants.

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