In response to the spread of COVID-19, the Government amended the law so that no tenant will be evicted during the next three months. During this period landlords can apply for a three-month payment holiday on their Buy to Let mortgages if necessary. Because of the change to the law, we cannot pay any new rent guarantee claims as there is no legal mechanism to process a claim. Once this three-month period has ended, and providing the Government re-establishes the legal process, we will be able to progress with the claim as per the policy guidelines.
The Government have confirmed that as part of the new legal process they are intending to amend the pre-action protocols for all housing possessions, meaning that there are currently undefined new requirements for landlords to undertake before they can apply to court for a possession hearing. As a result, the law may change again.
Our rent guarantee cover is an extension of our legal expenses cover, provided on our behalf by DAS Legal. In the meantime, we (along with DAS) are supporting landlords by issuing new tools to enable them to work with tenants to agree compromises and payment plans. This follows the spirit of the Government's recommendations and may help to establish a solution without the need for legal action. This should also help our customers to demonstrate that they have complied with likely future Governmental pre-action protocol requirements. When the full legal details of this have been released we will update our tools to ensure detailed legal compliance.
Should you still wish to remove rent guarantee cover from your policy, we will be happy to assist. However, should you do this, please note that once the new legal process is in place you will not be eligible to submit any new claims for rent arrears.
In addition, we have taken the decision to temporarily halt all sales of new rent guarantee cover until the Government re-establishes the legal process. Therefore, should you choose to remove rent guarantee from your policy, you will not currently be able to add this back on at a later date.