LGM Advisors commercial and retail leasing lawyers in Melbourne can assist you with all your leasing or licensing needs, whether you are a landlord, tenant, licensor or licensee. We can assist with drafting lease documentation, negotiating lease agreements and acting on your behalf in leasing disputes. Whether you are seeking advice in respect of a retail lease or a factory or warehouse lease, LGM Advisors can assist you with your requirements.

We can advise you on all aspects of leasing and licensing including:
• making an offer to lease
• Exercise of options
• Assignment of lease
• Exit and renewal options
• Rent review negotiations
• Subleasing
• Termination of lease
• Releases for outgoing tenants and guarantors
• Lock outs
• Acting on your behalf in any leasing dispute or licensing dispute (see our Commercial Litigation section for further details).

Retail Leases

If your premises are used wholly or predominantly for the sale or hire of goods by retail or the retail provision of services, and if the occupancy costs are less than $1 million per year (including cost of rent and outgoings) then the Retail Leases Act 2003 may apply to you.

Retail leases legislation does not apply to:
• tenants in the business of wholesaling, manufacturing or storage.
• tenants that are listed corporations or subsidiaries of listed corporations
• leases for a term of less than one year unless consecutively renewed
• premises or businesses as determined by the Minister for Small Business.

There are many rights and obligations that you have as a tenant or as a landlord under the Retail Lease Act 2003. These include:
• both landlords and tenants are prohibited from engaging in unconscionable conduct against the other.
• A landlord or real estate agent must return a tenant’s bond if the tenant has performed all his/her obligations under the lease.
• A landlord is obliged to give the tenant a copy of the lease signed by both parties within 28 days of the date of the tenant giving the signed lease to the landlord.
• A retail lease can only end by mutual agreement. In the event that the tenant unilaterally terminates the lease the tenant may be responsible for all of the landlord’s reasonable out of pocket expenses in finding a new tenant.
• If the tenant leaves the premises without notification to the landlord and the tenant is no longer paying rent, the landlord has a legal right to re-enter and terminate the lease on the grounds of abandonment and may take action against the tenant to recover any damages.
• Section 52 of the Retail Leases Act 2003 provides an obligation on the landlord to maintain the premises.
• Under the Retail Leases Act 2003, a tenant can, under some circumstances, claim compensation for interference from a landlord.
• The landlord can only force a tenant to move premises if there is a relocation clause in the lease. Certain statutory conditions such as the new premises must be ‘reasonably comparable’ to the existing premises; the rent for the new premises is to be generally the same as for the existing premises; and the landlord must pay the tenant’s reasonable costs of the relocation.

To speak to a Melbourne commercial leasing lawyer or Melbourne retail leasing lawyer contact us on +61 3 9832 0608 or email us at info@lgmadvisors.com.au for advice on your rights and obligations pursuant to the Retail Leases Act 2003 or if you require assistance with any of your leasing or licensing needs.