Recent Court Rulings

Landlord Not Liable for Damage after Month-to-Month Tenancy Terminated

June 20, 2018    

Facts:  A medical tenant clinic signed a lease that it renewed for an additional five-year term. During the initial and renewal term, the tenant paid monthly rent on time. After the renewal term was over, the tenant didn...

Landlord Must Complete Improvements to Collect Rent Under Lease

April 30, 2018    

Facts: A marine supply store signed a lease for retail space. Under the lease, the owner of the space needed to complete improvements to the property before delivering possession. The lease included the following in its definition of “delivery”: “Landlord...

Tenant Didn't Waive Right to Collect Damages for Medical Equipment

April 30, 2018    

Facts: The space that a medical office tenant leased for its operations was flooded several times due to leaks in the building’s roof. Each time a flooding incident happened, the tenant informed the owner, who refused to make repairs. The tenant lost over $1.5 million in...

Trial Necessary to Determine Whether Cotenancy Clause Constituted "Liquidated Damages"

April 10, 2018    

Facts: A clothing retailer tenant signed a lease for space at a shopping center. The lease included cotenancy provisions that required the owner to lease space to three major tenants. If all three tenants were open and operating continuously, the retail tenant paid minimum rent...

Landlord's Board Testimony Regarding Damages Was Improper

March 27, 2018    

Facts: A dry cleaning business subleased space in a shopping center. The business owner was also the guarantor on the sublease. The subtenant prematurely vacated the space. The landlord sued the subtenant. A trial court ruled in favor of the landlord, awarding it $343,000 in...

Landlord's Unlawful Detainer Action Didn't Bar Subsequent Lawsuit

March 27, 2018    

Facts:  After a retail tenant stopped paying rent, the owner of the center asked a trial court for an “unlawful detainer” so that it could physically evict the tenant. An unlawful detainer action is a...

Lease Prohibited Tenant’s Request for Declaratory Judgment

February 23, 2018    

Facts: A landlord served a notice to cure on its tenant, claiming that the tenant had failed to have the space’s fire sprinklers inspected. A dispute as to responsibility for the sprinklers ensued between the landlord and tenant. The tenant asked a trial court to issue a...

Owner Gave Required Notice to Vacate Under Temporary Lease Agreement

January 23, 2018    

Facts: A tenant that operated two retail kiosks within a mall property thought that the owner of the center wasn’t providing adequate security. It sued the owner for breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing and constructive eviction after the owner...

Trial Required to Determine Whether Owner Took Control of Premises

January 23, 2018    

Facts: An owner and tenant signed a lease for a four-story parking garage with two retail spaces below it. The owner served the tenant with a written notice to cure 21 lease violations primarily related to the physical deterioration of the building caused by the tenant. In...

Owner Is Responsible for Common Area Maintenance

December 20, 2017    

Facts: The owner of a movie theater signed a lease for space at a mall. Over a period of time, maintenance issues, like timely garbage removal, became apparent. The tenant asked the owner to take care of maintenance and upkeep, asserting that the lease and common area...

Trial Needed to Determine Whether Site Plan Change Was Permissible

November 22, 2017    

Facts: The lease between a multiple-phase shopping center owner and national tenant indicated that the tenant would occupy a space in building A of phase one in the not-yet-constructed property. The lease contained certain provisions concerning the construction process and the...

Estoppel Certificates Precluded Tenants from Collecting TIA

October 18, 2017    

Facts: Tenants sued both the former and the current owner of the building in which they leased commercial space for failing to reimburse them for improvements they made to the premises, as required under their leases. The current owner challenged the complaint on the grounds...