Scottish evictions pushed back to March

The Scottish Government has announced that unlike England and Wales, October 1st will not see a return to pre-pandemic notice periods.  

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As restrictions in England and Wales ease, landlords in Scotland gear up for a further six months of lengthy notice periods, with a six-month notice extended until 31st March 2022. 

Aileen Campbell, the Communities Secretary, stated that they will employ emergency powers granted by the Coronavirus Bill to prevent individuals from losing their homes.

The Scottish Government stated last month that it would take legal action against any landlord in the social housing sector who attempted to evict residents, as well as extending the period during which people cannot be evicted due to rent arrears.

Previously, the United Kingdom’s government prohibited all evictions in England and Wales.

Pauline McNeill, a Scottish Labour MSP, urged the minister in the Scottish Parliament today to promise that legislation would be in place to safeguard all sorts of tenants during the Covid-19 epidemic.

She said:

There should be no evictions as a result of Covid-19.

Our emergency legislation will include provisions to prevent evictions from the private or social rental sectors for a period of six months.”

Patrick Harvie, co-leader of the Scottish Greens, brought up the issue with Nicola Sturgeon as the First Minister briefed MSPs on the pandemic.

He claimed his colleagues were hearing from renters who were being served with orders to vacate by their landlords on a regular basis.

He said:

Nobody should be evicted from their house as a result of this situation, and I will make that plain at every opportunity

We have already stated that we will make a legislative amendment to extend the three-month period during which individuals cannot be evicted for rent arrears to six months, and we will continue to look at how we can provide people with greater protection beyond that.”

The enhanced security for tenants in the private rented sector was welcomed by Living Rent, a tenant advocacy group in Scotland.

In a statement spokesman David Hanson said that this is a fantastic win for tenants all around Scotland

The notion of tenants being threatened with eviction during a global pandemic was always ridiculous, and the Scottish Government’s announcement is tremendously welcome.

It is also critical that we also ensure that tenants are not driven into massive indebtedness during the pandemic

When businesses close, tenants who are already trying to make ends meet will find themselves unable to pay their rent.

The government must provide these folks with the protections we require as soon as possible, and these rents must be wiped off.

Evictions for people involved in bankruptcy proceedings have also been postponed.

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