Clause 26 - Commencement

Part of Leasehold Reform (Ground Rent) Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:30 am on 9 December 2021.

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Photo of Eddie Hughes Eddie Hughes Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities) 11:30, 9 December 2021

The clause makes provision for the commencement of the Bill. The substantive provisions of the Bill will come into force on a day appointed by the Secretary of State in regulations, but Members can rest assured that we intend there to be no unnecessary delay in implementation. I thank the hon. Member for Garston and Halewood, who is not in her place, for her question on Tuesday regarding the commencement of the Bill following Royal Assent. We understand her concerns about the commencement date, but setting a hard date right now would mean no flexibility should other issues arise making it difficult to achieve.

I assure the Committee that we will press ahead at full steam to bring the legislation into force, but we must also be practical and allow for contingencies, should they arise. That is why we think it is right to have a contingency period for us to implement the provisions within six months of Royal Assent. For completeness, I reiterate what I said in relation to amendment 10: the clause also provides that the Bill cannot be brought into force any earlier than 1 April 2023 with regard to retirement property. We are keen that leaseholders of retirement properties get the same benefits from the legislation as other leaseholders, but we also want to ensure that the sector has time to prepare for the change.