Last amendments to the special regime for protection of tenants and to the special regime in regard to delays in the payment of rents within urban residential and non-residential leases
On December 30th 2020, the Law no. 75-A/2020 of 30th of December was published and has established some changes to the special regime for protection of tenants and to the special regime in regard to delays in the payment of rents within urban residential and non-residential leases.
The above mentioned diploma has amended the special regime for protection of tenants, extending until June 30, 2021 the suspension of the consequences of the termination and opposition to the renewal, by the landlord, of residential and non-residential lease agreements, as well as the ones related with the expiry of the same. This extension is also applicable to the suspension of the effects related with the elapsing of the 6-month deadline (established in art. 1053.º of the Civil Code) if it ends while the exceptional measures adopted under the pandemic are in force, as well as to the suspension of the possibility of enforcing mortgages over properties that constitute the permanent residency of the debtors.
As it was established in previous diplomas, the applicability of this suspension depends on the regular payment of the rents during the same, unless the tenant is benefiting from the rent payment deferral regime (set forth in articles 8.º or 8.º-B of the Law no. 4-C/2020, of 6th of April, on exceptional protection measures for tenants).
Besides the extension of the deadline for the protection of the tenants, this new diploma has given special emphasis to the protection of tenants of non-residential leases concerning establishments that, due to legal or governmental directives, were closed on March 2020 and which remain closed on January 1st 2021.
In these cases, the duration of the contract is extended for a period equivalent to the time during which the establishment was closed, but never for less than 6 months counting from the reopening date.
It is relevant to highlight that the extension supra identified ceases if, at any time, the tenant expresses to the landlord that he does not intend to benefit from the same, or if he fails the payment of any rent due from the date of reopening of the establishment unless he is covered by the deferral regime already identified.
With reference to the special regime in regard to delays in the payment of rents, a special attention was also given to the protection of tenants whose establishments have been closed in March 2020 and which on January 1, 2021 remain closed – not being herein included the establishments which are part of commercial complexes that on 2021 will benefit from a reduction or a discount in the fees due.
In accordance with the most recent provisions on this matter, these tenants are entitled to:
a) Request the deferral of the payment of the rents due and deferred in 2020, for the period starting on January 1st 2022 and ending on December 31st This payment will be settled 24 consecutive instalments, in an amount corresponding to the division of the total amount due by 24;
b) Request the deferral of the payment of the rents due in 2021, and that correspond to the months in which the establishments are closed. The same must be settled in the terms established in the previous paragraph.
The tenants that intend to benefit from this regime, must inform the respective landlords, until January 20, 2021 being the effects of this communication retroactive to January 1, 2021. Upon this request, landlords may apply for a loan with reference to the rents of 2020 and 2021, which are due and not paid.
Also, with regard to non-residential leases, a support program is created according to which tenants who have suffered a loss of between 25% and 40% in 2020, may receive a capital aid amounting to 30% of their rent, with a limit of € 1,200 per month, and the ones who have suffered loss exceeding 40%, can receive a support equivalent to 50% of their rent, with a maximum limit of € 2,000 per month.
With reference to residential leases, the requirement for the level of effort for the household income is reduced from 35% to 30%.
Click HERE to see the diploma.
[Photo by: CHUTTERSNAP, available at unsplash.com]