Update on preventing squatters in commercial premises (England and Wales)

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner

With a large number of retail and restaurant premises closing temporarily due to COVID-19, there is an increased risk of squatters breaking into commercial premises.

Unlike residential premises, it is not a criminal offence to squat in commercial premises and the police will not take any action unless there is a breach of the peace.

Although tenants will retain liability for security during any period of closure, it is in both landlord and tenant’s interest to take proactive steps to minimise the risk of property being illegally occupied and damaged.

Please see full Update below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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