6 April - Key Updates in Property Legislation

6 April - Key Updates in Property Legislation
londonSpring has finally sprung! It's that time of year when Mother Nature gives us new life and Westminster gives us plenty of new legislation! A number of property-related changes have/will come into effect this month and the key legislative updates are summarized below.


1. Non-Domestic Rating (Small Business Relief) (Wales) Order 2015

Effective from: 1 April 2015

Business rates—reliefs- Wales

From 1 April 2015 relief is available for properties up to a maximum rateable value of £12,000 with different rateable values and percentages of relief applying for child care properties, post offices and retail premises.

This is subject to a temporary rate relief scheme which will run in Wales from 1 April 2015 to 31 March 2016. The temporary scheme also applies to properties with a maximum rateable value of £12,000 with different rateable values and percentages of relief applying for child care properties and retail premises.

2. Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015

Effective from: 6 April 2015

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015) govern the management of health, safety and welfare on construction projects in the UK. CDM 2015 replace the current Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 (CDM 2007).

CDM 2015 applies to both new and existing projects. In respect of the application of CDM 2015 to existing projects, where transitional provisions apply, see Practice Note: CDM 2015—transitional provisions (subscription required). This Practice Note examines in detail how CDM 2015 compares to CDM 2007.

For a summary of the differences, please see our Free CDM 2015 Checklist.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has also published draft guidance on CDM 2015, which is intended to assist duty holders under CDM 2015 prepare for the new changes.

From 6 April 2015, CDM 2007 and its associated Approved Code of Practice are no longer in force.

3. The Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England) Regulations 2015 SI 2015/620
Changes to Section 8 Notices - Housing Act 1988

Effective from: 6 April 2015

The Regulations prescribe forms for the purposes of various provisions of the Housing Act 1988, Pt 1 in relation to assured tenancies and assured agricultural occupancies. They include:

  • a landlord’s notice proposing an assured shorthold tenancy where the tenancy meets the conditions for an assured agricultural tenancy.
  • an application referring a notice proposing different terms for a statutory periodic tenancy to the tribunal.
  • a notice seeking possession of a property let on an assured tenancy or an assured agricultural occupancy.
4. Deregulation Act 2015 – Tenancy deposit provisions ss 30-32

Effective from: 6 April 2015

Measures in the Deregulation Act confirm that:

  • deposits taken before April 2007 where the tenancy has become periodic after that date must be protected and have prescribed information served within 90 days of 26 March 2015 (or if earlier before the first day after the commencement date on which a court determines an application or decides an appeal under HA 2004, s 214 or HA 1988, s 21) at which point they will be protected properly and treated as always having been.
  • deposits taken after April 2007 that were protected with prescribed information served at some stage during the initial tenancy will be treated as having had the prescribed information served on every renewal or on becoming statutory periodic tenancies.
  • deposits taken before April 2007 which became periodic before that date must be protected or returned before a s21 notice can be served. There is no financial penalty.
  • the prescribed information is amended to allow for agent’s details to be given in place of landlord’s details where the agent is handling the deposit.
5. Infrastructure Act 2015 – LLCs transferring to Land Registry

Effective from: 12 April 2015

From 12 April 2015, the responsibility for local land charges transfers to the Land Registry. Transitional provisions give the Land Registry power to apply the transfer gradually by giving notice to the relevant Local Authority) Infrastructure Act 2015, s 34, Sch 5

End of article

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About the author:

Melissa Moore is a dual qualified in England and Wales and South African lawyer and has 14 years’ experience in property practice in England. She has worked in local government and been a partner at a regional law firm and most recently an associate director at Berwin Leighton Paisner which she joined in 2005. Melissa has wide experience in all areas of property law and specializes in commercial real estate development. She has experience in a number of sectors including hotel, leisure, offices, investment, industrial, motorway service stations and funding. She has worked on large scale strategic developments and government funding initiatives, town centre regeneration schemes and private mixed use developments both for public sector and private developers and investment funds. In 2013 she was ranked by Legal 500 as recommended for local government work.