Lockdown extended to May 20th, schools will partially reopen

April 28, 2020 – During his press conference on the corona crisis on Tuesday April 21st, prime minister Mark Rutte confirmed that there will be an easing of the measures related to education. However, many other measures will be extended until May 20th.

Key contacts Michiel de Wit
Expertise Real estate development and transactions
Reading time 4 min reading time

These are the relaxed measures as announced:

  • Children up to the age of twelve are allowed to go to school again half of the time from May 11th;
  • Special education (for children of a primary school age) will completely reopen;
  • Secondary education can prepare for (partial) reopening from June 2nd;
  • Children up to the age of twelve are allowed to take up team sports again (training only, no competitions);
  • Children from the age of twelve up to eighteen are allowed to take up (team) sports again at a distance of 1.5 meters (only training, no competitions);
  • Dentists and dental hygienists may reopen.

This means that all other existing measures, including the closure of restaurants and cafés, fitness centres, barber shops and beauty salons, amusement parks, museums and zoos will be extended by three weeks, until May 20th. Furthermore, it was announced that that all (major) events, including concerts and professional football, will not be allowed to take place until September 1st.

To prevent a second wave of infections, people should continue to keep 1.5 meters distance and stay at home as much as possible. They also have to continue to work from home as much as possible.

Non-binding agreement between retail and real estate organizations – 10 APRIL 2020

Branch organizations of landlords and tenants in the retail sector (IVBN, INretail, Real estate interest, Retail Netherlands and VGO), the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the members of the commercial real estate committee of the Dutch Banking Association (NVB) have reached agreement on (support) measures that will balance the (financial) consequences as a result of the corona measures.

The most important items of this non-binding agreement are:

  • Rental suspension from April 2020 for retailers who are able to substantiate a loss of revenue of at least 25% due to the Corona crisis:
    i. Period of rental suspension: 3 months from April 2020;
    ii. Level of rental suspension: The rental suspension is at least 50% and can – if and as far as possible for the landlord – increase to, for example, 75 or even 100% (depending on its size and financial strength);
    iii. Due to complexity, customization applies to international retailers, retailers with branches and formulas abroad and retailers with an international shareholder. Custom made agreements are only entered into if the retailer shows a constructive attitude.
  • Landlords (and financiers) do not make use of their right to claim eviction or to claim bank and / or group guarantees during that period (unless necessary to protect interests).
  • The non-binding agreement presupposes a cooperative attitude of the retailers involved. This does not only apply to the information supplied by the retailers with regard to the loss of turnover suffered (these must be complete and verifiable). In addition, retailers are expected to make every effort – of course within the guidelines of the government – to achieve an early and safe (re) opening of their stores. In addition, this so called ‘Easter Agreement’ presupposes that retailers refrain from unilateral payment cancellations and that they continue to pay the rent as much as possible.

First Dutch case law related to eviction of residential premises – 7 APRIL 2020

Dutch sub district courts take into consideration that the national government reached agreement with the landlord organizations and trade associations (including Aedes, Vastgoed Belang, Kences and IVBN) to not evict tenants from their homes, unless there are serious circumstances. The Royal Professional Group of Bailiffs also advises its members to suspend evictions where possible. This agreement itself does not have to have consequences for the court decisions to be taken, however, it may have the consequence that it will take a(n) (un)certain amount of time before the eviction order can be executed with the intervention of a bailiff. Sub district courts will include a clause to that effect in its decisions. Furthermore, with respect to the corona crisis, the sub district courts have agreed as a guideline not to order evictions in residential matters from 6 April to (at least) 1 June 2020. However, the sub district court does take into consideration circumstances to make exceptions to this guideline.

Temporary regulations regarding the renewal of short-term lease agreements – 6 APRIL 2020

On April 6, the emergency bill “Temporary law extension temporary leases” was submitted to the House of Representatives. The proposed temporary law therefore aims to make it possible for landlords and tenants to temporarily extend the temporary short-term residential lease agreements. This proposed temporary law thus provides landlords and tenants for the period up to July 1, 2020 an opportunity to extend the temporary lease within the meaning of Article 7:271 (1) of the Dutch Civil Code, by a maximum of three months up to September 1, 2020.

Results of administrative consultations on home evictions – 26 MARCH 2020

Joint statement by landlords on evictions and temporary leases during the corona crisis. Among others, it was discussed that the landlords (supported by Aedes, IVBN, Kences, Vastgoed Belang and Minister for the Environment and Housing) will not charge collection costs to tenants who have run into problems due to the corona virus. The common line here is that evictions are postponed for the time being during the crisis period, unless there are obvious reasons, such as criminal activities or extreme nuisance. The landlords will assess the individual situation for eviction proceedings that were already pending before March 12.