The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS) has released guidance for tenants and landlords on ending a fixed-term lease in the age of COVID-19.
DMIRS said that under the temporary COVID-19 tenancy laws, landlords couldn’t issue a notice to terminate a fixed-term tenancy agreement with an expiry date that fell within the emergency period, from 30 March 2020 to 28 March 2021.
“Instead, the agreement will continue as a periodic agreement, unless the parties agree to another fixed-term,” DMIRS said.
“Once the emergency period ends, the ordinary tenancy laws apply, and either a landlord or tenant can issue a 30-day notice of termination at the end of the fixed-term agreement under section 70A of the Residential Tenancies Act 1987 (WA),” it said.
DMIRS said that if the fixed-term agreement ended on, or before, 28 March, landlords couldn’t issue a 30-day notice to terminate.
“You either need to agree on another fixed-term with the tenant or the arrangement rolls over into a periodic agreement,” the Department said.
“If the agreement becomes periodic and you want to terminate the tenancy, you can issue the tenant with a 60-day notice of termination.”
It said landlords could issue a 30-day lease termination notice if the fixed-term agreement ended after the emergency period.
DMIRS said its guidance and flowcharts would help landlords and tenants navigate the laws during and after the emergency period.