Tenant Wins

Tenant Entitled to Time to Gather Evidence in Breach-of-Lease Claim

October 30, 2013    

Facts: A used car dealership breached its six-year lease for a one-acre commercial lot where it sold trucks. It failed to pay the full amount of rent and other charges when they were due. The lot’s owner terminated the lease and sent the tenant an eviction notice.

Tenant Disputed Rent Calculation Based on CPI Adjustment

September 27, 2013    

Facts: The lease between the owner of a warehouse and its tenant set out base rent for the first several years of the lease. Under the lease, every seven years the base rent would be adjusted to include the original base rent plus an amount calculated using changes in the...

Rent Due During Overlap Between Leases Mitigated Breach

September 27, 2013    

Facts: In 2001, a tenant entered into a 10-year lease for office space owned by a state entity. The space was to be used by an educational service center as subtenant. (At the time the lease was entered, the owner was required by law to provide space for the service center; this...

Lease Didn't Give Owner and Tenant Same Right to Terminate

August 26, 2013    

Facts: A large national retailer of arts and crafts materials and a shopping center owner signed a lease with an ongoing cotenancy provision requiring the owner to lease the anchor store in thecenter to a regional or national tenant meeting certain criteria. If the owner fails...

Amendment Didn't Extinguish Excessive Vacancies Clause

July 30, 2013    

Facts: A tenant that sold electronic equipment leased space in a shopping center in 1973. A significant provision of the lease—the excessive vacancies clause—provided for abatement of rent in the event that the occupancy of the shopping center dropped below a certain...

Owner Must Send Statutory Notice of Automatic Renewal Provision

July 30, 2013    

Facts: The initial term of a lease between an owner and its tenant, a supermarket, was for 20 years and contained an option for the tenant to renew four times for five-year extension periods. Under the initial term, the lease would automatically renew unless the tenant notified...

Owner Couldn’t Withhold Consent to Assignment Just to Get Higher Rent

May 30, 2013    

Facts: The owner of a gas station leased the building used as a convenience store and the underlying lot to a tenant for a five-year term. The lease gave the owner the option of renewing the lease every five years, with a total of five additional five-year terms. There would be...

Tenant Triggered “Escape Clause”

April 22, 2013    

Facts: A mattress store tenant signed a lease with a shopping center owner for space next to a national chain grocery store. The monthly rent was $5,000. After the grocery store moved out of its space, the tenant stopped paying rent, gave a 60-day notice to the owner, and moved...

Yellowstone Injunction Granted for Restaurant Tenant

March 27, 2013    

Facts: An owner bought a building that already leased space to a restaurant, among other tenants. The tenants’ leases were assigned to the owner. The owner discovered that a tenant renting space for two bars and a delicatessen (restaurant tenant) in the building had been...

Tenant Not Responsible for Parking Lot

January 29, 2013    


Facts: A pedestrian slipped and fell on ice in the parking lot of a shopping center. She sued the owner of the property. The owner asserted that the tenant that rented the store near the parking lot was obligated to keep not only its space and the area...

Owner Must Maintain Lighting Near Loading Dock

December 21, 2012    

Facts: A discount store rented space at a strip mall. The lease provided that the center’s owner would maintain the lighting in the common areas, including the area of the center behind the stores, which was used as a loading dock for merchandise to be brought into the...

Statute of Limitations Barred Owner’s Back Rent Claim

December 21, 2012    

Facts: An office building owner continued to accept rent from a tenant after its lease was over. The lease provided that the owner could sue the holdover tenant for liquidated damages if it failed to surrender the space when the term ended. Several months later, the owner sent a...