Q&As

Do you have any materials on what steps a tenant with an oral periodic business tenancy may do to protect their position where the landlord is threatening to cut the locks used to secure the property?

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Published on LexisPSL on 24/12/2019

The following Property Disputes Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Do you have any materials on what steps a tenant with an oral periodic business tenancy may do to protect their position where the landlord is threatening to cut the locks used to secure the property?

Do you have any materials on what steps a tenant with an oral periodic business tenancy may do to protect their position where the landlord is threatening to cut the locks used to secure the property?

Regarding the tenant’s oral periodic monthly business tenancy—in ascertaining the nature of occupation in that situation, the courts will look to the substance of the agreement, not to the label that the parties have given to it. If early access is documented in an agreement that includes the ‘hallmarks’ of a lease, the result will be a lease. In Street v Mountford the House of Lords identified the hallmarks of a tenancy. They are:

  1. exclusive possession

  2. of defined premises

Payment of rent might also be an indication of a lease, but in fact rent is not required for a lease to exist (Ashburn Anstalt v Arnold).

For commercial property the distinction is crucial. An implied periodic tenancy will give a business occupier valuable rights under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 (LTA 1954)—primarily security of tenure, as was the case in London College of Business v Tareem Ltd (for more information regarding LTA 1954 rights, see Practice Note: LTA 1954 business lease

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