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Put Three Protections in Lease to Prevent Constructive Eviction Claims

April 22, 2019    
“Constructive eviction” happens when a landlord commits a lease violation so egregious that it effectively forces the tenant out. Result: The tenant is free of all obligations and, in many cases, entitled to damages. And while constructive eviction cases used to be somewhat rare, recent...
Feature

Avoid Seven Traps that Trigger Constructive Eviction Claims

April 22, 2019    
When you sue tenants for not paying rent, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll counter with a “constructive eviction” claim. The argument: We don’t owe you rent because you constructively evicted us. To win the claim, tenants must prove that you did (or omitted to do)...
Owner Wins

Tenant Free Speech Rights Don't Bar Landlord's Lease Breach Suit

April 22, 2019    
What Happened: A landlord sued a tenant for failing to install sound mitigation measures at its noisy factory as required by the lease.
Owner Wins

Liquidated Damages Clause OK Despite Not Listing Specific Amount

April 22, 2019    
What Happened: A medical lab claimed that the provision in its lease providing for liquidated damages of “net present value of the entire balance of rent due herein as of the date of [landlord’s] notice, using the published prime rate then in effect” was too open-ended to be...
Owner Loses

Landlord Is Liable for Negligence on Property It Leases to Tenant

April 22, 2019    
What Happened: This case began when an Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) employee fell 15 feet after the passenger ramp she was operating collapsed. The employee sued the landlord, the Port owner, for negligence due to a defect on the property. A federal jury awarded her more than $16 million in...
Owner Wins

Tough New Security System Isn't a Violation of Tenant's Access Rights

April 22, 2019    
What Happened: A landlord leased space containing a cellular communications tower for tenants’ use to store valuable equipment. The lease gave the tenants “24/7” access to the space. The landlord changed the security arrangements from a simple lockbox to a more elaborate call-in...
Feature

Drafting Licenses & Leases for Nontraditional Commercial Space

March 28, 2019    
By Sujata Yalamanchili, Esq. and Elizabeth A. Holden, Esq.
Plugging Loopholes

Addressing the Special Concerns of Companies That Use Co-Working Spaces

March 28, 2019    
By Sujata Yalamanchili, Esq. and Elizabeth A. Holden, Esq. Co-working spaces look like cool, hip, innovative spaces, so you may have wondered if you can do your job in one of those spaces. Could a law firm or just an individual attorney sit at a table for a day, type away, and drink the free coffee...
Owner Loses

Lease Lets Tenant Off Hook for Causing Careless Property Damage

March 28, 2019    
What Happened: A retail tenant in Michigan moved out of the space in the middle of the year even though the lease didn’t expire until Dec. 31. It forgot to make provisions for regulating the heat when the weather turned cold, and a water pipe froze in late December.
Owner Wins

Tenant Evicted for Nonpayment Can't Blame Landlord for Wrecking His Business

March 28, 2019    
What Happened: A tenant who hasn’t paid rent for two straight months is aggravation enough for any landlord. But when the tenant who skips rent has just borrowed $6 million from you to make improvements to its manufacturing facility, the stress level is that much worse.