The COVID pandemic had a severe impact on the economy. In California, there was an eviction moratoria, which meant that landlords could not evict residential or commercial tenants for not being able to pay their rent. If you’re a landlord for a commercial property, you’re probably wondering: how do COVID eviction moratoria affect commercial landlords? By finding out more information, you can decide if it’s time to hire representation.
Commercial COVID Eviction Moratoria in Los Angeles
You may have heard about all the protections in place for residential tenants in California. In Los Angeles County specifically, they had protections in place so that people wouldn’t get kicked out of their homes for nonpayment of rent. At the same time, commercial tenants with zero to nine employees had one year to repay back rent that was past due from the time period of March 2020 to January 2022. Businesses with 10 to 100 employees had six months to pay it.
But on February 1, 2022, commercial tenants were not protected from eviction due to nonpayment of rent. And even though the eviction moratoria expired, landlords still were not allowed to retaliate against tenants or harass them for rent payments.
Fighting Back Against a Landlord
Let’s say you’re a small business owner and you weren’t able to pay your rent due to the pandemic. If your landlord is harassing you for nonpayment or other reasons, you can contact a business lawyer to help you out. You can determine if your landlord is acting improperly and if you can put a stop to it by going through the legal system. Hopefully, you can work it out without having to go to court, but it may be your only option at this point, especially if your landlord is being unreasonable.
Evicting a Problem Commercial Tenant
Let’s say you’re a property owner and you have a problem commercial tenant. They might owe you rent or be causing other issues for you and your business. You will need to go through a formal eviction process that is legal under your city rules. Do not attempt to use “guerilla” tactics to get your tenant out, like calling them over and over or threatening them. This is never a good idea, even if they are breaking the rules. Instead, get in touch with a business lawyer to assist you at this time and make sure you do everything right. Then, you can avoid any issues with the law.
Signing a Commercial Lease
If you’re looking to move to a new place, make sure you carefully review the lease. It’s a smart move to get a business lawyer involved right from the start. They can review your lease and let you know if they spot any issues.
For instance, they may advise you to sign a lease for multiple years because you’ll be getting a better deal. Also, you wouldn’t have to move out after a year, which could be a huge hassle.
They can research the property owner, zoning laws, landlord, nuisance laws, and other relevant rules and regulations you will have to follow. Commercial tenants do not have as many protections as residential tenants, so just be aware that you need to know the exact laws for commercial tenants before you sign anything.
In order to be legal and enforceable, your lease needs to contain basic information like the monthly rent, duration of your lease, and amount for the security deposit.
Keep in mind that you’ll also have to factor in other costs such as utilities, insurance, security, parking, maintenance, and any modifications you’ll have to make. You will also have to carefully choose the location. Do your market research and have a well-researched business plan in place before you make any decisions.
Finding a Business Lawyer to Help You
With a business lawyer’s assistance, you can protect your business, whether you’re a commercial property owner or a tenant. You can know that you’re following the law at all times and contribute to the success of your company. Doing your due diligence is critical when you are a business owner.
Find a business lawyer who has several years of experience and excellent case results. They should have great testimonials as well to prove that they’ve helped their clients succeed.