On 26 March, the government published The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020, the effect of which is to restrict movement during the period.
The main legal representatives involved in conveyancing transactions; The Law Society, Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, The Conveyancing Association and the Society of Licenced Conveyancers have worked together to agree the outline of a process for deferring a contract completion date.
Guidance was published by The Law Society on 29 March 2020 to their members.
This provides for a change in the agreed date for completion, which complies with the requirements of s2 the Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989.
Parties should enter into a further contract, either e-signed to comply with social distancing rules, or by the respective solicitors with their clients authorisation. The contract must then be exchanged in accordance with The Law Society's formulae for exchange. The solicitors must send the original signed copy of the contract once the coronavirus (Covid-19) restrictions on movement are lifted.
The contract should cover:
Solicitors must also give consideration to and advise their clients on the following points:
Further advice is provided for clients who have been able to move during the stay at home period, and the requirements for physical distancing whilst following the government guidance.
It is recommended that: