Track Your Lease's Key Dates and Deadlines

March 19, 2012
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Q: I’ve missed some deadlines that are in my lease. So far, there haven’t been any serious ramifications, but I’m afraid that an oversight in the future could result in a breach of the lease. How can I avoid this?

A: If you don't keep track of key deadlines and dates in your office building or shopping center lease, you could violate the terms, lose a valuable right, or inadvertently enable the owner to exercise one of its rights. For example, if you don't notify the owner of your intent to renew by the appropriate deadline, it may argue—and a court may agree—that your late renewal notice doesn't have to be honored.

Most state courts take the view that lease deadlines should be strictly enforced and that failure to meet a deadline should be excused only in very limited circumstances—for instance, if the failure was caused by fraud.

It’s certainly possible to determine correct dates and deadlines from the lease and create a master lease calendar. Make sure put to put both parties' obligations on the calendar—don't just track the dates and deadlines that relate to your rights and obligations. Those that relate to the owner's rights and obligations are equally important. By knowing when certain obligations of the owner begin, when notices are due, and so on, you'll know when you can take appropriate actions.

For a checklist of important dates and other steps to follow that can help you avoid costly litigation, search for “Never Miss Key Lease Deadlines and Dates Again,” in our online archive.