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Richard - Bizlaw
Richard - Bizlaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 8899
Experience:  30 years of corporate, litigation and international law
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hello, you answered my question in regards XXXXX XXXXX my store

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hello, you answered my question in regards XXXXX XXXXX my store front lease because of constant water and sewerage problems. you said I should ask for delaratory relief. i informed the management that i would ask the court for this. they agreeded to either help me find a new location or let me out of my lease. my questions is this: what can i ask them to do as far as sharing relocation cost? since my business have to move and shut down due to no fault of my own, and if they do not agree to share financial responsiblity for my relocation what can i ask for in a lawsuit against the company since I have to move my store, re-build, occur extra cost, and the lost of sales and earnings? In a nut shell what damages should I ask the court to reward me due to this major issue?












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Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.

Hi,

 

Your case is not for declaratory relief. It is a claim for breach of the covenant of quiet enjoyment and implied covenant of good faith. Damages are for the interference with your reasonable business expectations by the landlord which prevents you from enjoying the benefit of the bargain. Any consequential damages associated with your having to relocate may be recovered.

 

However, in a settlement negotiation, what you get is what you agree to. You may find that the landlord treats your demand for consequential damages as a deal breaker. If you do, then you will have to decide whether to sue and risk the court not giving you attorney's fees as part of the suit, or accepting something less than what you originally wanted.

 

The point is that a settlement is a negotiation,and unless you're prepared to negotiate, you'll probably find it a waste of time.

 

Hope this helps.

 

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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
the relief is to free me from responsibility.....but due to my business having to relocate because of the constant water and sewerage coming in my store if the company doesn't agree to help with the financial cost, even though they have agreed that this is a ongoing issue what can i ask the court to reward, based on me having to close my business, relocate, and get re-established in a different area?
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.

You can ask for any damage that "reasonably foreseeable and naturally flows from the breach." This is a flexible standard, but it basically means that if the parties to the contract could have seen a particular injury at the time that the lease was entered into, then the cost of that injury is recoverable.

 

If you decide to sue, then you ask for everything you can think of and more. Never ask for exactly what you want, because you will surely receive less.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
they are agreeing to let us out of the lease and negligence on their part, but tey have not responded to help with relocation etc....please give examples what i can ask the court for....
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.

Difference in cost between your current lease and a new location.

Build-out cost, not to exceed what you previously paid.

Cost of moving equipment/fixtures.

Cost of business cards, stationary, etc.

 

You could ask for lost profits (not revenu), but you will have to show consistent profits prior to the beginning of this episode, because your damages must be definite and certain or the court cannot award them.

 

 

Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
Hi Arrgt I am just seeing your question. The answer you got is accurate because you have gotten a concession from the landlord that he agrees your space is not habitable so you do not have to break the lease and takek the risk of a successful lawsuit. Basically the landlord has admitted you have the right to vacate. From what you say it sounds like the landlord has not responded to your request for financial assistance. Before I took any action, I would do one of two things. Push him to respond. Second itemize a list of costs you will incur as a result of the relocation. These will include moving, loss of business due to relocation, new stationery, notifying all customers of the new location, the lost value of advertising that cannot be converted at no cost to the new location. This list will become your bargaining chip because they would be your damage claim if you had to go to court. The landlord may not be willing to spend as much money as you may require by making a direct payment of cash. However, one of the things you seek to get finanicially even is free rent in the new space to make up the losses. Economically this is easier for th landlord to deal with than paying cash and has the same benefit for you.

If this answer is responsive to your question, please accept it. That is how we are compensated. I would also be appreciated if you provided feed back on your view of the answer. Finally, if the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus. If I can be of further assistance or you have other questions in the future you can ask for me and reach me at this site.

This communication is not intended as legal advice. A local attorney should always be consulted for legal advice. No client/attorney relationship is intended or created by this communication.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
The CEO of the company that manages the property spoke with me and decided that the space I lease has water and swerage problems. He agreeded to do a admendment to my lease to let us out. He has not responded to my question to provide financial support for the move. Why would the CEO be this involved with my situation and not his managers? if HE doesn't want to provide financial support what should my next move be? This move or the closing of our store will be costly for my wife and I.
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
What you should do is confirm you discussion in writing with the CEO. By that I mean that they admit that the water and sewage in your space makes it unusuable for your business and that you will have to relocate. I would then include in that letter the request for financial assistance and list the amounts of expenses you will incur in the move.

This gives you a written record of the conversations and they will have to respond in some fashion. If they do not agree to the financial cost then you can pursue litigation. The litigation is the last resort. I would get out the letter ASAP.

If this answer is responsive to your question, please accept it. That is how we are compensated. I would also be appreciated if you provided feed back on your view of the answer. Finally, if the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus. If I can be of further assistance or you have other questions in the future you can ask for me and reach me at this site.

This communication is not intended as legal advice. A local attorney should always be consulted for legal advice. No client/attorney relationship is intended or created by this communication.
Richard - Bizlaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 8899
Experience: 30 years of corporate, litigation and international law
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Customer: replied 5 years ago.

The CEO responded and said he cannot accomdate the financial cost that will take us to relocte, but maybe help with rent. The only problem with this is the other properties they manage is much bigger then my current space and more expensive. Their other space will increase my monthly rent expenses by $1050.00 not including moving expenses, equipment rental, build-up, additional fixtures etc....I was going to ask for at least six months free rent to help off set some of the relocation cost.....I believe this will be cheaper for him this way instead of me going to court and asking for all cost to help relocte and find a new property to lease. At this point I believe the CEO is willing to do very little in reference to financial support. He will not respond to e-mails in writing, but he will call me and leave a voice mail with his answer. How should I approach this? Or should I just contact my attorney at this point? He also notified me that the admendment to my current lease is ready. I believe that the new admendment proves guilt and fault. I also confirmed our discussion in writing that the water and swerage problem makes it unusable, he only responds verbally.

Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
Unfortunately, I think you are not at a place where you need to retain your attorney. Increasing your rent by $1,050 per month plus adding the other expenses is not helpful. I trust that you have not paid the rent for August. I would not pay that rent.

I would also again confirm in writing his voice message to you the lease amendement to relocate you because of the unhabitable condition of the space. I would point out that the increase in rent and the failure to comment on the relocation and related costs just seem to increase your injury. Propose to settle the matter by him giving you free rent for six months in the new space and no charge for the existing space as you have to move. If he does not respond, then I would retain your attorney and try to locate new space as soon as possible. It should be a renter's market. I would not pay rent for the current month.

Thanks for accepting my answer, I hope this is of help. Also thanks for asking for me.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I confirmed in writing that the admendment to the lease was due to the space being unhabitable. I also propsoed the six months of free rent to settle the matter. The CEO read it and never sent a response or replied. He had a manager to tell me his proposal which reads:

 

$700.00 for the first two months at the new location

$1400.00 for 10 months

$1500.00 for the second year

$1600.00 for the third year

 

This proposal is not in our budget. We have been in business for 18 months and just beginning to see profit. This move would be a set back without financial assistance.

 

It appears to me the CEO wants me to go into a new 3 year lease at the new location. They told me the admendment would be done today it wasn't.

 

How is this helping me with relocation cost because of a problem which I did not cause?

I have not paid for the current month. Based on what you have read concerning my problem, did you think the court will award me damages to relocate. I have several statements from other store owners explaining the ongoing water and sewerage problems at this location with myself and them. If I contact my attorney what cost should be litigated?

Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
I think you have an excellent case to recover your damages for having to relocate your store. You should proceed to look for new space right away. Once you have relocated and calculated all your expenses, plus return of your security deposit, you should file suit.

If this answer is responsive to your question, please accept it. That is how we are compensated. I would also be appreciated if you provided feed back on your view of the answer. Finally, if the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus. If I can be of further assistance or you have other questions in the future you can ask for me and reach me at this site.

This communication is not intended as legal advice. A local attorney should always be consulted for legal advice. No client/attorney relationship is intended or created by this communication.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Our business is just starting to break even and seeing a little profit after expenses. The average rent in this area is $1600.00 plus security to match. We do not have that capital. We have only been opened 18 months. It's obvious the CEO is not going to respond in writing. He just left a voice mail apologing for the admendment not being ready as promised and he will discuss with the property manager we are dealing with now as far as set up time. When we first signed with this company they gave us 2 months free rent to set up to and open our doors. At this point the CEO is avoiding to answer certain major issues in writing. ie...six months free rent.....to off set relocation cost.....This I believe is going to be a legal nightmare even though they know this problem is on going.....
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
Are you saying that the rent he is offering you in his other building is what rents go for in that area? Is your current rent around $600 per month? Is the space he is sending to you larger than your current space so it has room you do not need?

As for the CEO responding in writing, I was not sure that he would but your letter is itself a record which if not contested will leave the impression with a judge that your version of the facts is the true one, that is why I wanted the letters written.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
yes, i'm saying that the current space i'm currently in is sufficent for business, but he does have a space that is equal where we are located,and yes he is asking me to pay more rent for the new location......and the new rent is higher at the new location. yes the the rent is higher in that area, and yes my current rent is around $720.00 a month including CAM (COMMEN AREA MAINTENANCE). The space he is offering is room we do not need, but they do not have property equal to our space currently.....
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
what are you asking me? it's going to cost me more money to move...we are just starting to make money (capital) after being in business 18 months...to pay full relocation cost then sue will be a business hardship......
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
What are the going to do with the space you are in now? Is there any other comparable space for similar rent in your area?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I assume they are going to try to lease the space i'm currently in out......I have searched and looked there is no spaces in my area that is similiar to mine in cost or size....they are all leased out......or in a bad part of town.....or need to be condemned....
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
Is there any way a repair to the current space could be done to resolve the problems such as raising floor or other repairs?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
we are located in a store front. all the stores are on the same water line. the piping needs to be replaced, and the owner doesn't want to do that......and the restaurants and hair salons would have to close their business....as well as other stores, because employees and workers would not be able to use the bathrooms.....
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
The CEO is saying he is not going to give us six months free rent to offset relocation cost.....but he will be willing to give us a month or two to setup (this they give anyway when you first sign your business lease).......and he is not willing to do anything else. he feels that the admendment to our lease which allows us to vacate because of the water and swerage problems is good enough......
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
I think you are left with no choice but to find another place and then sue for the difference in rent for the balance of the term of your current lease plus your costs of relocation. Those are all recoverable damages for the unhabitability of the space. If your total damages are less than $10,000 in Texas you can file in small claims court and then you do not need an attorney and can handle it yourself.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I have 18 months remaining on my lease......the difference will total about $14,000.00 not to include relocation cost. I f I cannot sue in small claim court because of the amount and I have to hire an attorney...can I ask the court to award attorney fees....in addition?

Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 5 years ago.
You can ask but attorneys fees are generally not available except by agreement or a specific statute. Check your lease and see if the prevailing party on a dispute is entitled to attorneys' fees. If it only gives the landlord attorneys fees if he wins, you may have a basis for claiming that if you prevail you should get your attorneys' fees.

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