Covenants are a common source of disputes between landlords and tenants. Covenants are often in writing and contained in a deed, for example a lease, which is signed by the parties.

Their effect can be coercive or preventative and will often afford a benefit to one party whilst being detrimental to another. Covenants generally dictate how parties to a lease must or must not act and the benefit or burden of a covenant may pass to successors in title.

Disputes commonly arise where a party to a lease fails to comply with a covenant, for example a covenant to pay rent, to insure, to keep premises in repair, not to alter premises or not to assign or sub-let, to name but a few. Some breaches are considered to be continuing breaches and others are seen as ‘once and for all’ breaches.

A number of remedies will be available to the party suffering as a result of a breach of covenant and which remedy is most appropriate will depend on the nature and extent of the breach and the suffering party’s objectives. Often a commercial solution can be achieved without relying on any remedy.

The suffering party may be in a position to claim damages if a loss can be evidenced. Sometimes, it will be preferable to look to bring the lease to an end, apply for an injunction to remedy the breach or, if you are a landlord, exercise Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery or regain possession of the premises.

This is an area where specialist advice is required and at Woodcocks Haworth & Nuttall, whether you are a landlord or a tenant, we will be able to advise you on all aspects of breaches of covenant from trying to avoid breaches in the first place to considering which remedies are best for you when a breach has already occurred.

We recognise that leases can be a valuable source of income and so we will help you to understand your rights and obligations and how to protect your interests. We pride ourselves on delivering commercial and expert advice to find you the right solution.

Contact us today

Please contact either Daniel Long or Eleanor Longworth at our Bury office on 0161 761 4611 to discuss any aspect of commercial property disputes.


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