Arrangements for and effect of a moratorium
91.Section 73 sets out in a table who is required, and in what circumstances, to notify the regulator that certain steps are being taken to enforce a security over land. Notice is required both before and after taking one of the actions specified. Subsection (2) allows the regulator to define what is meant by a step “to enforce a security over a registered social landlord’s land”.
92.Section 74(1) provides that a step will have no effect unless the person taking it has notified the regulator in advance of their intention. However, failure to notify the regulator after the step has been taken will not make the step invalid (section 74(2)).
93.Taking one of the steps specified at section 73 automatically triggers a stop (a moratorium) on the disposal of land held by the registered social landlord (section 75). Section 91 defines land as including “any existing or future interest of the landlord in rent or other receipts arising from land”. Taking another specified step during the period the moratorium is in place will not result in a new moratorium or affect the length of the existing one. Any moratorium must, unless cancelled or extended, end 56 days after notice is given that the specified step has been taken (section 76).
94.Section 76 also provides for the regulator, with the consent of all the RSL’s secured creditors (who can be located after reasonable enquiries), to extend the moratorium from time to time. Notice of such an extension must be given to the RSL and any liquidator, administrative receiver, receiver or administrator appointed in relation to the RSL or its land. Where the regulator considers the proper management of the RSL’s land can be secured without making a proposal under section 80 - and following consultation with the person whose step triggered the moratorium - the regulator can cancel the moratorium. The regulator must notify the RSL and its secured creditors when a moratorium ends. Where a moratorium has ended, other than by cancellation, the notice given must also provide an explanation of section 77.
95.Under section 77 if, after a moratorium has ended (other than by cancellation), a specified step is taken against the same RSL within three years, a new moratorium will not be triggered. The regulator may, with the consent of the RSL’s secured creditors, renew the original moratorium for a specified time. The regulator must give notice of the renewal to the RSL and any liquidator, administrative receiver, receiver or administrator appointed in relation to the RSL or its land.
96.Section 78 ensures that, under a moratorium, the RSL’s land cannot be disposed of without the regulator’s consent (unless the regulator’s consent is not required under section 108 of this Act). The regulator may consent to a disposal before the moratorium begins and it may place conditions on its consent.
97.Section 79 gives the regulator powers to appoint, or require a registered social landlord to appoint, an interim manager with powers to manage some or all of its affairs during a moratorium. The interim manager must, however, comply with any direction given by the regulator and may not dispose of land or grant security over land.