Wales enforces "winter truce"
The Welsh Government recently laid regulations to enforce “the winter truce” bailiffs and High Court Enforcement Officers (HCEO) have been asked to follow over the Christmas period from 11 December 2020 to 11 January 2021.
The UK Government had previously announced it had provided bailiffs and HCEOs with guidance not to take enforcement action to carry out evictions during this period. Last month, they backed this up in law through their own regulations, applying in England only.
In turn, the Welsh Government have also strengthened this measure with their own law. In Wales, there will be the following exemptions to the ban:
- cases where the court is satisfied that the order for possession was made wholly or partly on the grounds of anti-social behaviour; nuisance; and/or domestic violence in social tenancies;
- cases where the court is satisfied that the claim is against trespassers who are persons unknown.
This move gives greater certainty to all parties as the guidance originally given to bailiffs was advisory rather than compulsory. The guidance also applied during Wales’ recent “fire-break” lockdown and England’s own national lockdown which ended last week.
The exemptions to the “truce” are different in England where those who built at least nine months’ of arrears before the pandemic and tenants who have provided fraudulent statements can still have action taken against them.
Read more about the rules in England here.