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Break Clauses in Commercial Leases - What Does 'Vacant Possession' Mean?

Commercial leases frequently stipulate that premises are to be handed back to the landlord 'with vacant possession' – but what exactly does that mean? The Court of Appeal pondered the issue in a case concerning an office block that was stripped back...

Deemed Commercial Tenancy Inferred from Possession and Payment of Rent

Even in the absence of a formal lease, the existence of a tenancy can in some cases be inferred from an occupier's exclusive possession of premises and the payment of rent. The Upper Tribunal (UT) did just that in opening the way for a company to seek...

Tower Block Owners Granted Pre-Emptive Anti-Urban Exploring Injunction

Commercial property owners are increasingly plagued by so-called 'urban explorers' who risk life and limb by scaling high-rise buildings for the entertainment of an online audience. As a High Court ruling showed , however, judges can take effective –...

Has Your Property Been Compulsorily Purchased? Don't Sit on Your Hands

If your property has been compulsorily purchased by a public authority to make way for an infrastructure project, you should be entitled to compensation. As one case showed , however, such claims are subject to a strict time limit and lodging them at the...

Commercial Leases and Opting Out of Security of Tenure - Test Case Ruling

Commercial landlords and tenants may contract out of the security of tenure provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 , but only if certain conditions are met. One of those conditions came under close analysis by the Court of Appeal in a ruling that...

Judge Awards Substantial Damages in Scaffolding Trespass Case

Building works to extend or improve your property may involve temporary incursions onto your neighbour's land, for which permission is required. In a case that showed the serious consequences of pressing ahead without such consent , partners in a medical...

High Court Grants Breathing Space to Commercial Tenant Hit by Pandemic

Many commercial tenants who are experiencing cash-flow crises due to the COVID-19 pandemic have been constrained to stop paying rent and are racing to restructure their debts – but where does that leave their landlords? The High Court squarely...

'Simple' Clause in Commercial Property Lease Triggers High Court Dispute

Commercial property leases can be long and complex documents, but it is often their most apparently simple clauses that give rise to dispute. That was certainly so in a High Court case concerning an airport hotel owner who was required to pay for its gas...

Thinking of Signing a Lease Without Legal Advice? Just Don't Do It

Entering into a lease, whether commercial or residential, without taking legal advice is, to say the least, highly unwise. A landowner who fell into that trap put himself at serious risk of an unwanted tenant moving into his newly built home. The man bought...

Commercial Buildings Need to Be Practical - But Aesthetics Matter Too

Commercial buildings are not just boxes and, to many tenants, aesthetics are just as important as practicality. The High Court made that point in ordering a landlord to carry out multi-million-pound repairs to an iconic glass tower block. One of the...
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