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Rental Sector

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 16 July 2020

Thursday, 16 July 2020

Questions (98)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

98. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government when the blanket ban on landlords will be lifted with regard to the eviction of tenants (details supplied). [16433/20]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Housing)

With effect from 27 March 2020, under new emergency measures introduced into law to protect tenants during the COVID-19 emergency period, tenants cannot be forced to leave their rental accommodation, other than in exceptional circumstances. The measures also prohibit any increase to rent for the duration of the emergency period. These emergency laws initially applied for a period of 3 months from the enactment of the Emergency Measures in the Public Interest (Covid-19) Act 2020 but, on the request of the former Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, the former Government, by Order, extended their application until 20 July 2020.

Under the legislation, the process for any extension of the COVID-19 emergency period involves the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government requesting the Government to make an Order, having consulted with the Minister for Health and with the consent of the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform. The Government must consider it appropriate and be satisfied that it is in the public interest to extend the emergency period having regard to the following:

- the threat to public health;

- the highly contagious nature of COVID-19; and

- the need to restrict the movement of persons to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

A request to Government to make an Order to extend the emergency period in accordance with the Emergency Measures in the Public Interest (Covid-19) Act 2020 is under consideration.

The RTB would encourage landlords and tenants to communicate with each other during the emergency period to see if a resolution to any disputes can be found. The RTB is also encouraging all customers who may require assistance or advice to contact them via its web chat service as there may be delays to its phone lines during the emergency period. The webchat service can be accessed at the following link: https://onestopshop.rtb.ie/contact-us/.

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