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Commercial Leasing Evictions lawyer, Fairfax, Northern Virginia.

Commercial Leasing Eviction attorny from Gross & Romanic PC, Call now : 703-273-1400
Gross, Romanick, Dean & DeSimone, P.C. > Commercial Leasing Evictions lawyer, Fairfax, Northern Virginia.

The Statute of Frauds in Virginia

Based on its name you might think that the Statute of Frauds has something to do with criminal or civil fraud, but it doesn't. The name "Statute of Frauds" actually refers to a law passed by the British Parliament in 1677, and the name has been retained through the centuries. It specifies which kinds of contracts must be in writing in order to be enforceable. Its purpose is to prevent the enforcement of oral agreements through perjury. The most common applications of the Statute of Frauds in Virginia are as follows:   Holding a person responsible for the promise to pay the...

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Lease Survives Bankruptcy

An individual who owned a business filed a personal Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. The business remained at the premises and continued to pay the rent, but the bankruptcy trustee failed to accept the Lease. Under bankruptcy rules such failure is an automatic rejection of the Lease. The Landlord filed a Motion to Lift Stay to eject the business from the space based upon the rejection of the Lease. The Court ruled that the rejection of the Lease on behalf of the bankruptcy estate was not a termination of the Lease. So long as the debtor did not default on the Lease, the Landlord...

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Security Deposits & Bankruptcy

  What happens to a tenant’s security deposit after the tenant files bankruptcy? If rent is owned, can the landlord apply the deposit to unpaid rent? An informal poll of area Bankruptcy Lawyers reveals a belief that a security deposit can be used as a set- off against both pre-petition damages and lease termination damages under Section 553 of the Bankruptcy Code. The set off is subject to mitigation by the landlord, including releting the premises. The safest process is to have a court grant relief from stay before applying the security deposit; but this procedure may cause a debtor to file...

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Abandoned Property

Commercial landlords must often deal with property that is seemingly “abandoned” by a former tenant.  Some of the landlord’s options include keeping the property, selling or leasing the property to third parties, transferring the property to a new tenant or trashing the property.  Before any decision can be made, the Landlord must determine whether the property is truly abandoned by the former tenant, and if it is, whether any third parties have legal claims to the property. In residential cases, landlords are required by law to send a letter to the former tenant giving a 10 day notice that unless the...

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The Landlord’s Lien: The Right to Seize Tenant’s Property

Your tenant owes you three months rent. You want to collect, but you know that the moment you file a lawsuit your tenant is going to load everything he owns onto a truck bound for Upper-Slobbovia. What can you do? Virginia law may have the solution to your problem: the “landlord’s lien.” This under-utilized remedy offers landlords an opportunity to protect their interests and recover amounts owed without giving the tenant a chance to secret away assets located at the premises. The Virginia Code gives landlords a lien on all of the tenant’s property located on the leased premises. Furthermore, the...

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Residential & Commercial Tenants: Do Not Treat Them the Same

All leases are not created equal. Commercial leases are generally governed by the specific terms of the lease agreement between landlord and tenant. Residential leases, on the other hand, are governed by the specific terms of the lease agreement and by certain statutory terms that are automatically merged into every residential lease/occupancy. Generally speaking, residential tenants have considerably more rights than commercial tenants.  Some of the important distinctions that landlords should be aware of are identified below: Evictions Commercial landlords have rights of self-help; they can, under proper circumstances, simply lockout non-paying tenants. Residential landlords, however, have no such remedy. The Virginia...

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Build-Outs and Tenant Allowances

A common aspect of commercial leasing is the building out of the premises for the tenant.  The costs of the build-out (and the hiring of the contractor(s) to perform the build-out) may be the responsibility of the landlord alone, of the tenant alone, or may be a joint enterprise between landlord and tenant.  Whatever the arrangement, build-outs are a very common area of dispute between landlords and tenants.  It is extremely important that the landlord clearly state the terms of the build-out in the written commercial lease. The following are the some items relating to the build-out that must always be...

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Suing the Guarantor of the Lease

In Virginia, a commercial eviction is commenced by filing an unlawful detainer action in the general district court. In the unlawful detainer action, the landlord requests possession of the premises and money damages against the tenant and any lease guarantors. Typically, general district courts have a maximum jurisdictional limit of $25,000.  By statute, this limit does not apply in commercial evictions if possession of the premises and money damages are pursued in the same unlawful detainer action.  In other words, the landlord can sue the tenant for more than $25,000 in the general district court.  However, some general district judges have ruled differently with regard to whether...

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Handwritten Notations on Leases

You have prepared a typed lease for a prospective tenant and delivered the lease to the tenant for execution. The tenant proceeds to sign the lease, but also makes a few handwritten modifications to the body of the lease.  The tenant returns the signed lease with the handwritten modifications.  What are your rights?  What happens if you countersign the lease?  What happens if you cross out the tenant’s notations?  What is the legal consequence if you executed the Lease before sending it to the tenant for signature? In addition to being a classic, first-year law school exam question, the above-situation is quite...

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