Effect of MCO: Delivery of Vacant Possession and Liquidated Ascertained Damages/《行动管制令》的影响: 住宅物业的空置所有权(VP)与违约赔偿金(LAD)

Effect of MCO: Delivery of Vacant Possession and Liquidated Ascertained Damages

 

**可以在下方查看本文章的华文版本

The construction industry is likely to be affected since the implementation of the Movement Control Order (“MCO”) by the Malaysian Government starting from 18 March 2020.

The MCO would affect among others, the timely completion and delivery of vacant possession by the housing developers pursuant to the sale and purchase agreement (“SPA”).

The said SPA under the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Act 1966 (“HDA”) and the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Regulations 1989 (“HDR”) has stipulated the time of delivery of vacant possession by the developer.

Pursuant to Regulation 11(1) of the HDR, every sale and purchase of a housing property shall be in the form prescribed in Schedule G or Schedule H, depending whether the said unit is a landed property or high rise property.

Further, Schedule G and Schedule H respectively stipulate that the developer has to pay liquidated ascertained damages (“LAD”) to the purchaser in the event the delivery of the vacant possession has been delayed.

When does the time start to run?

The Court of Appeal in GJH Avenue Sdn Bhd v Tribunal Tuntutan Pembeli Rumah & 2 Ors [2019] 1 LNS 1184 held that the date of delivery of vacant possession begins from the date of the SPA.

Can housing developers apply for an extension of time to deliver the vacant possession?

Pursuant to Regulation 11(3) of the HDR, the Housing Controller is empowered to waive or modify the provisions in the contract of sale. Regulation 11(3) of the HDR is reproduced as follows:-

(3) Where the Controller is satisfied that owing to special circumstances or hardship or necessity compliance with any of the provisions in the contract of sale is impracticable or unnecessary, he may, by a certificate in writing, waive or modify such provisions:

 Provided that no such waiver or modification shall be approved if such application is made after the expiry of the time stipulated for the handing over of vacant possession under the contract of sale or after the validity of any extension of time, if any, granted by the Controller.

However, the recent Federal Court case of Ang Ming Lee vs Menteri Kesejahteraan Bandar, Perumahan dan Kerajaan Tempatan [2020] 1 CLJ 162 has held that Regulation 11(3) is ultra vires [to] the Act (Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Act 1966) i.e. the particular regulation is contrary to the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Act 1966.

Pursuant to the Federal Court case, it was the Minister of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government (currently known as Minister of Housing and Local Government) duty to “regulate and to prohibit” the terms of an SPA and not the Housing Controller.

Therefore, it is not possible for the developer to make an application for extension of time for the delivery of vacant possession to the Housing Controller under Regulation 11(3) of the HDR.

(1)By virtue of s. 24(2)(e) of the Act, the Minister is empowered, or given the discretion, by Parliament to regulate and prohibit the terms and conditions of the contract of sale.

In view that the time for delivery of vacant possession is one of the terms in the contract of sale and the Minister of Housing and Local Government has the power to regulate and prohibit the same, application for extension of time for the delivery of vacant possession can be made by the housing developer to the Minister of Housing and Local Government under Section 24(2)(e) of the HDA.

Any temporary measure which has been provided to assist the construction industry in Malaysia?

Unfortunately, Malaysia is unlike its neighbouring country, Singapore, who has enacted and passed the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act 2020 on 7 April 2020 (“Covid-19 Act”).

The Covid-19 Act aims to provide temporary relief for individual and/or businesses that are unable to fulfil their contractual obligations. The measures are to suspend the contractual obligations for a period of six months (may be extended or shorten by the Minister) but not to remove the contractual obligations.

Pursuant to Section 6(1) of the Covid-19 Act, the relief also applies to construction and supply contracts.

The Covid-19 Act covers the contractual obligations to be performed on or after 1 February 2020, and contracts entered into before 25 March 2020. It is also stated under Section 6(5) of the Covid-19 Act that liquidated damages are to be disregarded during the six months period (which might be shorten or extended by the Minister).

It is suggested that a similar measure and relief should be provided in Malaysia in order to assist the developers and the purchasers to achieve some level of certainty in the event of the late delivery of the vacant possession.   

However, some progress is made in Malaysia. On 15 April 2020, Malaysia’s Minister of Housing and Local Government, YB Puan Hajjah Zuraida Kamaruddin has mentioned during the interview, Inisiatif KPKT Dalam Tempoh PKP | Soal Rakyat on TV3 Malaysia the following:-

  1. The period in between the MCO will be disregarded in computation of time for the completion of the housing development;
  1. The housing developer will be granted with extension of time for delivery of vacant possession;
  1. The purchaser is not allowed to claim for an LAD incurred during the MCO period.

Refer to:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rfgBbn_6W5o&feature=youtu.be&fbclid=IwAR3QIUlMCvnofcOdfPFTEPMYsCG7kGZ_INeLaNvGavm4GA97AGrSiL03eBM (Begin to watch from 22.22 minutes)

However, the Minister’s statements during the said interview will not have any legal effect. A subsidiary legislation and/or regulation has to be enacted by the government to provide clarity and to avoid unnecessary influx of cases claiming for LAD by the purchasers.

In the absence of any subsidiary legislation and/or regulation, the developers may need to consider, either to apply to the Minister for an extension of time under Section 24(2)(e) of the HDA or to enter a supplemental agreement with the purchasers to extend the delivery of the vacant possession.      

By:

Yeoh Tung Seng & Lee Su Ting

DISCLAIMER: This article is for general information only and should not be relied upon as legal advice and/or legal opinion. Messrs Yeoh & Joanne accepts no liability for any loss which may arise from reliance on the information contained in this article. 

 

《行动管制令》的影响: 住宅物业的空置所有权(VP)与违约赔偿金(LAD

 

建筑业很可能受到马来西亚政府于2020年3月18日起实施《行动管制令》影响。

其中,《行动管制令》将影响住宅物业发展商无法根据买卖协议及时完成和逾期交付该物业的空置所有权。

根据《1989年住房开发(管制及许可)法令》(“HDA”)和《1989年住房开发(管制及许可)规例》(“HDR”)的买卖协议规定了发展商交付空置所有权的期限。

根据HDR第11(1)规例,住宅物业的法定买卖协议都应采用附录G或附录H规定的形式,这取决于所述单位是有地房屋还是高层建筑。

此外,附录G或附录H分别规定,如果延迟交付空置所有权,发展商必须向买方支付违约赔偿金。

什么时候开始计算违约赔偿金?

上诉法院案件GJH Avenue Sdn Bhd v Tribunal Tuntutan Pembeli Rumah & 2 Ors [2019] 1 LNS 1184认为,交付空置所有权的期限应从该买卖协议的日期开始计算。

发展商能否申请延期交付空置所有权?

根据HDR第11(3) 规例,房屋管理者(Housing Controller)有权放弃或修改销售合同中的规定。HDR第11(3)规例转载如下:-

(3) Where the Controller is satisfied that owing to special circumstances or hardship or necessity compliance with any of the provisions in the contract of sale is impracticable or unnecessary, he may, by a certificate in writing, waive or modify such provisions:

 Provided that no such waiver or modification shall be approved if such application is made after the expiry of the time stipulated for the handing over of vacant possession under the contract of sale or after the validity of any extension of time, if any, granted by the Controller.

 原文翻译:

(3)凡房屋管理者信纳由于特殊情况或困难或需要,遵从售卖合约的任何条文已不切实可行或不必要,他可藉书面证明书,豁免或修改该等条文:

 但如该项申请是在根据售卖合约移交空置管有所规定的期限届满后或在房屋管理者批准的任何延长期限(如有的话)有效后提出的,则该项豁免或修改不得获批准。

然而,联邦法院在近期的案件Ang Ming Lee vs Menteri Kesejahteraan Bandar, Perumahan dan Kerajaan Tempatan [2020] 1 CLJ 162中认为第11(3)规例超越了HDA的权限,即该HDR违反了HDA。

根据该联邦法院的案例,城市和谐、房屋及地方政府部长 (现称房屋及地方政府部长)有责任于“规范和禁止” 售卖合约的条款,而不是房屋管理者。

因此,发展商不可能根据HDR第11(3) 规例向房屋管理者申请延长交付空置所有权期限。

(1)By virtue of s. 24(2)(e) of the Act, the Minister is empowered, or given the discretion, by Parliament to regulate and prohibit the terms and conditions of the contract of sale.

 原文翻译:

(1)根据该法第24(2)(e)条,部长被议会授权或授予酌处权来管理和禁止销售合同的条款和条件。

鉴于交付空置所有权期限是销售合同的条款之一,房屋及地方政府部长有权对其进行管理和禁止,发展商可根据HDA第24(2)(e)条向房屋及地方政府部长申请延长交付空置所有权期限。

马来西亚采取了哪些临时措施以帮助建筑业?

不幸的是,马来西亚不同于其邻国新加坡,即新加坡于2020年4月7日通过了《2020年新加坡COVID-19(临时措施)法案》(简称《COVID-19法案》)。

《Covid-19法案》目标于为无法履行合同义务的个人和/或企业提供临时补助。这些措施将暂停合同义务长达六个月(部长可以延长或缩短该期限),但并不会取消该合同义务。

根据《Covid-19法案》第6(1)条,该补助也将应用于建筑和供应合同。

《Covid-19法案》涵盖2020年2月1日或之后该履行的合同义务,以及2020年3月25日之前签订的合同。《Covid-19法案》第6(5)节还规定,在该六个月期间违约赔偿金将不被考虑(部长可能会缩短或延长该期限)。

马来西亚政府或许应该考虑通过类似的措施和补助以帮助发展商和买家在交付空置所有权被延期的情况下给予某程度的确定性。

然而,马来西亚在应对方案方面也有些进展。于2020年4月15日,马来西亚房屋及地方政府部长YB Puan Hajjah Zuraida Kamaruddin在电视采访Inisiatif KPKT Dalam Tempoh PKP | Soal Rakyat on TV3 Malaysia中提到以下事项:-

  1. 介于《行动管制令》期间的时期将不被纳入于计算发展商完成住宅物业的期限;
  1. 房屋发展商将获准延长交付空置所有权的期限;
  1. 买家不允许对《行动管制令》期间发生的违约损失提出索赔。

参考:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rfgBbn_6W5o&feature=youtu.be&fbclid=IwAR3QIUlMCvnofcOdfPFTEPMYsCG7kGZ_INeLaNvGavm4GA97AGrSiL03eBM

(从22.22分钟开始观看)

尽管如此,房屋及地方政府部长在上述电视采访中的声明不具有任何法律效力。政府必须通过附属法例及/或规例,以提供一定的明确性,并避免买家提出过多以及不必要的索偿案件。

在缺乏任何附属法例及/或规例的情况下,发展商可能需要考虑根据HDA第24(2)(e)条向房屋及地方政府部长申请延期交付空置所有权,或者与买方签订补充协议,延长交付空置所有权的期限。

 

文章来自于:律师事务所合伙人杨栋洆律师 (Yeoh Tung Seng)与李淑婷律师(Lee Su Ting)

免责声明:本文仅供参考,不应作为法律建议和/或法律意见。Yeoh & Joanne律师事务所不会承担因依赖本文所含信息而产生的任何损失的责任。

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