Commercial leases can be a risky venture. Sometimes business does not go according to plan, and a commercial lease becomes a significant burden. If you are in this situation, you are likely wondering whether you can break a commercial lease in Florida.
The answer depends on the particular circumstances surrounding the lease. Commercial leases in Florida are primarily governed by Part I of the Florida Landlord and Tenant Act. Getting out of a Florida commercial lease can be complicated, but it is possible under several different circumstances.
At BrewerLong, we know what it takes to break a commercial lease in Florida. Our experienced business attorneys can help you understand the terms of your lease agreement and identify any potential avenues for breaking it. We will also provide straightforward and practical advice regarding the costs and benefits of pursuing your options. Contact us today and schedule a consultation.
Commercial Leases in Florida
A commercial lease is a contract to rent commercial property to a person or company so they can pursue a business purpose. In general, commercial leases are more challenging to break than residential leases. The rules governing commercial leases in Florida apply to all leases that are not considered residential under Part II of the Florida Landlord and Tenant Act. If the primary purpose of your lease agreement is to conduct business, it is likely a commercial lease.
Breaking a Florida Commercial Lease
Breaking a commercial lease without incurring significant costs that destroy the value of walking away is not always possible. Your ability to break your lease will depend on the circumstances surrounding it and why you want to break it.
When Tenancy Is at Will
Unwritten leases are considered tenancy at will, and the lease period is based upon the periods over which rent is payable. For example, if payment is at the beginning of each month, the tenancy is month-to-month. Tenancy at will can also be created by contract.
In an at-will tenancy, each party is free to leave the lease as soon as the payment period is up. However, you must give notice to the other party. The notice period depends on the length of the at-will tenancy.
In most cases, if you wish to leave the lease before the period you paid for is over, you must come to an agreement with the other party.
When Going Bankrupt
In most cases, bankruptcy is a valid reason to break a commercial lease in Florida. However, bankruptcy will not simply make the debt disappear. Bankruptcies follow specific rules and procedures in Florida, and a business must satisfy the legal requirements to use this option. Further, leases and other executory contracts are subject to specific rules during bankruptcy proceedings. If you are considering bankruptcy for your business, consulting with an experienced attorney is essential.
When There Is an Early Termination Provision
Some lease agreements include an early termination provision. These provisions allow the parties to leave the lease early under specified conditions. The terms and conditions are different in each contract. Most early termination clauses include some form of penalty for leaving the lease early. If you are considering invoking an early termination clause, it is vital to understand and follow it closely.
When the Other Party Breaks the Contract
If one party breaches the lease agreement, the other party might be able to terminate the lease. Common breaches include unpaid or late rent, a failure to provide agreed-upon services, and a failure to perform proper maintenance. The party that wishes to break the lease must provide written notice. If you plan to break a lease due to a breach of contract, an experienced attorney from BrewerLong can help.
When You Can Find Someone to Sublet
Some commercial leases allow subletting. If the lease allows subletting, finding another party to occupy the space for the remainder of the lease might be your best option. However, subletting can be risky. An experienced attorney can help you understand and mitigate the risks involved in subletting a commercial property. They can also help you write an airtight sublet agreement to protect your interests.
When You Can Come to a Mutual Agreement
Sometimes the best option to get out of a commercial lease agreement is to talk to the other party. If you ease the burden on the other party or find a way for them to benefit from the arrangement, they might allow you to walk away from the agreement. For example, you can help your commercial landlord find a new tenant at a higher rent than you currently pay. Finding a win-win situation can make walking away from a lease relatively easy.
BrewerLong Can Help with Your Commercial Leasing Needs
If you want to break a commercial lease agreement, BrewerLong can help. We provide every client with the personalized attention they deserve and are known for delivering an exceptional customer experience. Schedule a consultation now.
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