In my blog last week I confirmed that Government extended the protection from eviction for both residential (31 May 2021) and business premises (30 June 2021) as we continue to exit lockdown.
Concerningly a number of other key business protections due to expire at the end of this month were unaddressed, but thankfully yesterday Government addressed most of them. As of tomorrow the following exemption periods will be extended as follows:
From 30 April 2021 - suspension of wrongful trading until 30 June 2021
From 30 March 2021 - termination of supply clauses on insolvency and small company exemption to that until 30 June 2021
From 30 March 2021 - the new and relaxed moratorium requirements until 30 September 2021; and
From 31 March 2021 - the restriction on statutory demands and winding up petitions until 30 June 2021.
Whilst businesses continue to be shielded from these effects, directors are being urged to make the most of this period anticipating return to some degree of social and trading normality from June onwards and to thoroughly plan for full restart.
This should include strong contingency planning to bridge to alternatives in the event of other business stakeholders failure or change in their trading eg suppliers, IT, employees, shareholders, funders, distributors, machinery, customers etc. which in turn critically affects their business.
"We've been through a period of unprecedented Government support, and directors need to plan for how they will manage when these measures are wound down – especially as it will take time for the business environment to return to how it was before the pandemic started. Now is the time for anyone with worries about their business finances to seek professional advice. Seeking this now rather than later typically provides more options to deal with challenges faced by the business, more time to decide which option is most suitable, and more time to implement the most appropriate solution." Duncan Swift, Immediate Past President R3