Early Termination of Lease
Defenses for Early Termination of Lease
Dedicated Buffalo landlord tenant attorney Sam Alba explains what’s important to know about an early termination of lease in New York State in this educational video.
We have overseen several cases in which landlords wrongfully go after their tenants for accelerated rent. These are tricky cases, and they have proven to be profitable for large real estate corporations. Cases such as these occur when a tenant vacates a property before a lease has expired, and many leases will give the landlord a right to sue the tenant for the term of that lease. Lawsuits can range from $15,000 to close to $1 million in some commercial lease situations. The landlords have strong cases, but it is possible for the tenants to win nevertheless. There are defenses that protect tenants, and our office has successfully used those defenses in court. For example, if the landlord fails to try to re-rent the property, a tenant can assert this as a defense. If the tenant had to move out because the property was not habitable, our office can assert this as a defense as well. If the landlord has mitigated its damages by, for example, foreclosing on property that was left on the premises, we can assert this as a defense. These are complex cases, and the landlord will win if a former tenant does not answer the complaint and carefully fight these issues.