Owner Loses

Court Upholds NYC COVID-19 Commercial Tenant Anti-Harassment Law

December 17, 2020    

What Happened: New York City has a law that bans commercial landlords from engaging in “harassment” to force tenants to vacate or waive lease rights via illegal threat of force or threats based on race, creed, color, age, etc. At the height of the first wave of the...

Landlord Trumps Up Minor Lease Infractions as Excuse to Get Rid of Tenant

December 17, 2020    

What Happened: A landlord who had just bought the property and was eager to lease it for a higher rent approached the current gas station tenant about a potential buyout. The negotiations proved unsuccessful. Less than three months later, the landlord tried to evict the tenant...

Court: No ‘Prevailing Party’ Entitled to Attorneys’ Fees in COVID Rent Case

December 17, 2020    

What Happened: Who won the legal showdown between the Florida mall and the retail tenant that cited the force majeure clause of its lease as an excuse not to pay rent in May due to business losses resulting from government COVID-19 shutdown orders? At stake was more than pride....

Tenant Can Exercise Its Lease Kick-Out Rights Despite Notice Snafus

November 18, 2020    

What Happened: A lease for a shopping center included the following clause:

Landlord and Tenant Blame Each Other for Sprinkler Malfunction

November 18, 2020    

What Happened: A pharmaceutical company used the warehouse it sublet to store its drug products. But the warehouse sprinkler system went haywire and inflicted $265,110 in damage to the products. The company sued the landlord and tenant. Naturally, each side blamed the other and...

No Evicting Tenant for Slight Delay in Curing Rent Nonpayment During COVID

October 21, 2020    

What Happened: Bed Bath & Beyond (BB&B) didn’t provide the necessary sales records to verify its percentage rent payments, concluded the landlord’s auditor in the spring of 2017. The landlord didn’t talk to BB&B or otherwise follow up on the audit....

Court Orders Landlord to Stop Blockading Tenants’ Customer Access Roads

July 24, 2020    

What Happened: It was a long running dispute: The landlord thought the tenant owed Terminal Usage Fees; the tenant disagreed. In a civil society, there are courts to resolve these types of disputes. But instead of filing a lawsuit, the landlord took matters into its own hands by...

Landlord Must Pay $19.5K for Harassing Tenant

May 19, 2020    

What Happened: While laws banning landlords from harassing tenants are common in residential settings, New York is one of the few states that extends this protection to commercial tenants. A small landscaping business owner claimed that her landlord crossed the line by filing...

Cabinets and Monitors Are 'Trade Fixtures' that Tenant Can Remove

April 6, 2020    

What Happened: Ultimately, the tenant who leased property to open a marijuana retail store was found to have no excuse for moving out and not paying rent. But there was another question the court had to decide: Did the tenant have the right to take the bolted-down glass display...

Duty to 'Perform' Improvements Includes Duty to Pay for Them

March 17, 2020    

What Happened: The following clause, which refers to California Title 24 requiring buildings to meet specific energy efficiency standards, was at the center of a dispute between a landlord and its optical components manufacturing tenant:

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Tenant Not Responsible for Attack in Parking Lot

March 17, 2020    

What Happened: Two unknown assailants attacked a GameStop customer in the parking lot of the property it leased. The customer sued GameStop for negligence. GameStop argued that it's not liable for what happened in the parking lot, because it doesn’t control that...

Landlord Can't Collect Waste Damages While Lease Remains in Effect

December 23, 2019    

What Happened: A landlord discovered that a tenant had removed landscaping, added a sidewalk, and made other major structural alterations without notifying or getting the landlord’s consent as the lease required. The failure of the unauthorized alterations to meet building...