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Retail & Commercial Rent Relief now formally extended

You will all recall our earlier e-Alert regarding the Queensland Government’s announcement that the end date for the Regulations governing COVID-19 rent relief for commercial and retail leases would be extended to 31 December 2020.

The Regulations have now been amended and as announced, rent relief is now available for tenants for the period commencing 1 October 2020 up to and including 31 December 2020 (the Extension Period).

Apart from the change to the end date, other amendments contained in the Regulations are that, on and from 1 October 2020:

  1. only those tenants who are eligible for the extended JobKeeper scheme for the period starting on 28 September 2020 and ending on 4 January 2021, are able to seek rent relief during the Extension Period. This is the case even for those tenants who were previously eligible under the original Regulations;
  2. landlords are not required to include any rent waiver as part of the relief offered during the Extension Period; and
  3. the obligation on a tenant to commence deferred rent payments for the initial period (ending on 30 September 2020) remains at 1 October 2020, while deferred rent payments for the Extension Period cannot be required to commence before 1 January 2021.

Other than the above, the Regulations remain unchanged and continue to contain the existing restrictions on drawing on bank guarantees or terminating Leases for failure to pay rent or outgoings, or to continue to trade.

If you need assistance with further negotiations and/or lease disputes, or you have further questions on the Regulations, please contact Fiona Sears or Sharon O’Toole.

"The content of this publication is for reference purposes only. It is current at the date of publication. This content does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Legal advice about your specific circumstances should always be obtained before taking any action based on this publication."