PCA: ‘imperative pubcos do as much as possible to help tenants’

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Legislation date: the pubs code came into force in 2016
Legislation date: the pubs code came into force in 2016

Related tags: coronavirus, Pubs code, Pubs code adjudicator

The pubs code adjudicator (PCA) has urged the six regulated pub-owning businesses to support their tied tenants as much as possible, amid the coronavirus crisis.

It also emphasised the need for the pubcos to perform their duties, fairly and lawfully, and cited that, at present, a fair and transparent approach was never more vital.

The statement read: “On 6 April, the PCA called on the six regulated pub-owning businesses to demonstrate how they propose to support all their tied tenants through the Covid-19 emergency.

“We have made clear to pub-owning businesses the pubs code remains in place, as do their specific statutory duties, requiring fair and lawful dealing with their tied tenants.”

Fair and transparent

It added: “Now, more than ever, these principles require a fair and transparent approach by pub-owning businesses with their tenants.

“It is imperative pub-owning businesses do as much as they can to help their tied tenants. We have challenged each pub-owning business to show how it is being fair both in its approach to rent and in making arrangements for ensuring, as far as possible, every tenant is able to return to trading and profitability after lockdown.

“To that end, the PCA has told each pub-owning business that it is expected to start from a clear and consistent methodology for how it will support its tenants and be open about their approach so individual tenants know what treatment they can expect.

“We have stressed the importance of the pubs code requirements in regulation 41 to record and agree conversations with tenants.

“The PCA is also concerned to ensure the financial stresses caused by the Covid-19 lockdown do not translate into inequalities of risk and reward in the regulated sector once the pubs reopen.”

Previous annoucement

This follows the PCA and deputy PCA calling on the pubcos to waive rent to clarify how they plan to support tied tenants​ through the coronavirus crisis last month (Monday 6 April).

Just a few days prior to this (Friday 3 April), it was announced the six businesses regulated by the pubs code had signed a joint PCA declaration to protect tenants rights​ after informing the regulator they are unable to uphold duties amid the Covid-19 shutdown.

Such duties include serving compliant rent proposals, rent assessment proposals and market-rent-only (MRO) option full responses, according to the PCA.

Related topics: Legislation

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