COVID-19 and mortgagee repossession of land…
In the Supreme Court matter of Catalyst Provisional Lending Pty Ltd & Ors v Dick-Telfar & Anor  NSWSC 324 which was before his Honour, Justice Harrison on 31 Marc 2021, it was argued by the defendants that:
1. a lender should be prevented from taking possession of mortgaged land because the government might make regulations to assist defaulting borrowers during the COVID-19 pandemic as per the COVID-19 Legislation Amendment (Emergency Measures) Act 2020 (NSW); and
2. the Court should exercise its discretion to prevent the mortgagee from taking possession of because there were subtenants and they were protected under Residential Tenancies Act 2010 (NSW).
Both arguments were ultimately rejected by his Honour.
On the first argument, his Honour held that the fact that there was the possibility of regulations being made under the COVID-19 Legislation Amendment (Emergency Measures) Act 2020 (NSW) did not assist the defendants.
On the second argument, his Honour said that there was no evidence that the subtenants were not able to relocate to a new premises.
The mortgagee was permitted to proceed to take possession of the property to recover money owing under the mortgagee.
COVID-19 relief for residential tenants as well as retail and commercial tenants affected by the current lockdown in New South Wales …
Tenants who have lost employment or income because of the current lockdown in NSW or because they or a household member is ill with COVID-19 can serve a notice on the landlord and are then protected from eviction and, based on their particular circumstances, can pay as little as 25% of their rent.
Presently, this relief is available for the period 14 July 2021 to 11 September 2021.
Retail and Commercial Tenants
If a retail or commercial tenant fails to pay rent or outgoings during the period 13 July 2021 to 20 August 2021 and is a business entitled to receive government assistance, a landlord cannot take eviction action without first entering into a mediation with the tenant and only after a certificate has been issued that the mediation failed to resolve the dispute.
Let’s hope that, in the event of the lockdown being extended to a date passed 28 August 2021, relief will also continue to be available.