The State Government has announced an extension to the operation of the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme ('CTRS').
Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme ('CTRS') - update
On the 15th January 2022, the State Government announced an extension to the operation of the CTRS which was due to expire that same day. The operation of the CTRS has now been extended to 15 March 2022. Note that the regulations to apply the extension of the CTRS are yet to be issued, but will apply by 16 January 2022 so there will be no gap between the existing scheme and the extended scheme.
The extended scheme will be available to businesses with turnover of $10 million or less and which have suffered a decline of 30% or more due to COVID-19. Rent relief is intended to continue on the same proportional reduction of rent-equals-loss-of-turnover basis as the previous CTRS, with half the rent relief as waiver and half as deferral. We would anticipate that payments on existing deferral arrangements would also be delayed until 16 March 2022.
The extension will mean that the eviction moratorium for eligible tenants will continue (noting tenants who have not yet sought rent relief would likely still be entitled to apply for relief, albeit for a limited time). The Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) has also noted that the ban on rent increases will continue and that Landlords will not be able to evict tenants without VSBC mediation (noting we assume this related to tenants who have applied for and are entitled to relief).
Landlords who are eligible will continue to be entitled to support pursuant to the Commercial Landlord Hardship Fund.
The Victorian Government’s press release is as follows: Commercial Tenancy Support Extended.
The VSBC has also released the following: Victorian Government announcement: Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme to be extended
How can Sharrock Pitman Legal assist?
If you have any queries regarding the impact of COVID-19 on your business operations, please see our COVID-19 resources page on our website or contact a member of our Property Law team on 1300 205 506 or by email at email@example.com.
The information contained in this article is intended to be of a general nature only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Any legal matters should be discussed specifically with one of our lawyers.
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Andre is a Principal of Sharrock Pitman Legal.
He heads our Property Law Group and is an Accredited Specialist in Property Law (accredited by the Law Institute of Victoria). He also deals with Commercial Law. For further information, contact Andre Ong on his direct line (03) 8561 3317.