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Throughout June our Restructuring and Insolvency Team are looking at the potential impact of the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill.  This article kicks off examination of the provisions that have been tabled in respect of termination clauses in supply contracts. Update: Since the Bill became law on 26 June 2020 the exclusion for small suppliers has been extended to 30 September 2020

We will be issuing further guidance in due course on the practical issues these provisions entail specifically for suppliers, for companies/directors, and for insolvency practitioners.

Introduction/Background

The majority of commercial leases in Scotland incorporate provisions entitling the Landlord to terminate a Lease in the case of Tenant breach.  Irritancy clauses, as they are known, entitle a Landlord to take steps to regain possession and reclaim rent and other monetary arrears including interest within a relatively short period of time. 

The UK Government introduced the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill on 20 May 2020 with the reading of the Bill taking place in the House of Commons this Wednesday 3 June 2020. Some of the measures being introduced are temporary and designed to help companies in the short term which are facing ongoing financial pressures as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, however many of the other changes represent a more permanent and fundamental change to insolvency law in the UK.

Directors during Covid-19 : Risk? Yes ... but how much risk?

Dispute Resolution partner, Robert McDiarmid, is featured in the May/June 2020 edition of the Business Bulletin - published by Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce.  

Our Residential Property Team has been working remotely throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, but with some restrictions starting to be eased in England and the Scottish Government setting out its plans to do likewise when the time is deemed to be right, we are looking to the future.

With stringent social distancing measures still in place, many professionals working in the real estate industry are considering electronic signatures as an alternative method of concluding contracts and securing the execution of formal deeds.   Prior to the Covid-19 lockdown, the use of electronic signatures was rare but with signatories confined to home, reliance on the traditional ‘’wet ink’’ signature approach can be a challenge.        

Updated 19 June 2020

At the beginning of June, the SCTS announced that Sheriff Court buildings were beginning to reopen (to court staff) in line with phase 1 the Scottish Government’s Covid-19 Route Map. The court staff will, over the last few weeks, have been working hard to bring as much backlogged business up to date as possible with a view to hopefully being able to start processing new non-urgent cases (with the exception of simple procedure claims and summary cause actions for the recovery of heritable property).

Being placed on furlough leave or sadly losing employment as a result of Covid-19 could well have an impact upon separated parties who have a written agreement or court ordered arrangement in respect of alimentary obligations, whether that be child aliment or aliment for a spouse or civil partner.

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