Updates on the Digital Economy Act for 2018

8th February 2018
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Further to our article on 2 November 2017 outlining the changes to the Electronic Communications Code, the Digital Economy Act 2017 (the ‘Act’) came into force on 28 December 2017. The Act, has repealed the Telecommunications Act 1984 and a new Electronic Communications Code (the “Code”) is now in force.

What is the Digital Economy Act?

As discussed in our November 2017 article, the Digital Economy Act 2017 aimed to introduce changes to the code enacted by the Telecommunications Act 1984. These changes to the code include reducing the cost of installing communication infrastructure on private land, and making it easier to resolve disputes between telecom operators and landowners.

The Act’s Amendments to the Landlord & Tenant Act 1954

The Act has also introduced an amendment to the Landlord & Tenant Act 1954 (“1954 Act”) which addresses a criticism of the original code and its overlap with the 1954 Act. The security of tenure afforded to business tenants under the 1954 Act will not apply to Code leases granted after 28 December 2017.
Only time will tell whether the Code, which gives telecoms operators certain rights to construct infrastructure and install and maintain equipment on both public and private land, will help to simplify the dispute resolution process between telecom operators and landowners.

Get in touch

If you are a landowner who is renewing or negotiating a new agreement with a telecoms operator or you are concerned how these changes might affect you, or if you are currently experiencing difficulties with a telecoms operator and require advice, please feel free to call Penni Gibbs on (01273) 249212 or email at pjg@deanwilson.co.uk