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New Rules to Accelerate Postponed Eviction Dates

The Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 4) Rules 2021 were laid before Parliament on the 16th July, which outline changes to the rescheduling of postponed eviction dates reducing it from 14 to 7 days. This is especially important where occupants claim to be self-isolating or have declared to have positive Covid-19 results.

The rules will come as good news for landlords following previous Government guidance that “bailiffs will not carry out an eviction if they are made aware that anyone in the property is self-isolating or has coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms. In these circumstances the eviction will be rescheduled with at least 14 days’ notice.”

Whilst television media have shown that enforcement companies may prefer the approach of carrying out surprise evictions, we have always set the highest of standards to ensure that all occupants are made aware of the proceedings in the lead up to an eviction date. Such an instance was brought to the fore in the primary case of Partridge -v- Gupta [2017] EWHC 2110 (QBD) where such procedures were clarified – a case in which Jonathan Chatfield, Equivo’s Managing Director of Enforcement Services was instrumental. It was quoted in the Civil Procedure Rule Committee (CPRC) review and the introduction of the N54 and the alignment of the County Court and High Court eviction process.

We take the health and safety of the occupants, landlords and their employees very seriously and welcome this new amendment. We ensure all our staff follow up to date HCEOA and CIVEA guidelines and regularly carry out lateral flow tests, as laid out in our response to the latest government guidance for enforcement agents (bailiffs).