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Web Articles
           Procedures and Requirements for Lease
       
                Expiration and Termination

Commercial

Commercial leases are governed by Florida case law and
certain Florida statutory provisions.  Under the applicable
Florida statutes and case law the proper procedure for
terminating a commercial lease in Florida depends on the type
of lease that exists between the landlord and the tenant.  

Commercial leases that do not have a specific termination date
are considered to be tenancy at will leases or periodic tenancy
leases.  The term of a periodic tenancy lease is determined by
the period for which rent is paid.  If each rental payment entitles
the tenant to occupy the leased commercial premises for one
month then the periodic lease is month to month and the initial
term is for one month and each subsequent renewal term is one
month.  Or if each rental payment entitles the tenant to occupy
the leased premises for one year then the periodic lease is year
to year and the initial term is for one year and each subsequent
renewal term is one year.

A commercial periodic tenancy lease does not have an
expiration date that can be determined when the term of the
lease commences therefore a notice is required to terminate
the lease.  If the notice to terminate a periodic commercial lease
is not properly given then the lease will automatically renew for
an additional renewal term at the end of the current renewal
term, the tenant will have the right to continue to occupy the
leased premises for such additional renewal term, and the
landlord will have the right to receive another rental payment.

The notice to terminate a commercial periodic tenancy lease
can be given by either the landlord or the tenant but it must be
in writing and delivered in accordance with any requirements for
notices included in the lease.  

The notice must be delivered to the recipient of the notice a
certain period of time before the expiration of the current
renewal term.  The period of time before the expiration of the
current renewal term by which the notice must be delivered is
dependant on the type of tenancy to be terminated.   The
notice to terminate a year to year commercial periodic tenancy
lease must be delivered no less than 3 months before the
expiration of the current renewal term.  The notice to terminate
a month to month commercial periodic tenancy lease must be
delivered no less than 15 days before the expiration of the
current renewal term.  And the notice to terminate a week to
week commercial periodic tenancy lease must be delivered no
less than seven days before the expiration of the current
renewal term.

Florida case law and statutes define all commercial leases in
which the expiration date can be determined when the term of
the lease commences to be a term of years lease meaning the
term of the lease is for a defined number of years, such as one
year or two years, or a division of a year, such as one week or
six months.  Therefore a commercial lease that, by its terms,
expressly expires on a stated date is obviously a term of years
lease.  But a commercial lease for a specific term from a
specified date, such as five years from a specific date or six
months from a specific date, is also considered a term of years
lease.  

A term of years commercial lease, by its terms, has an
expiration date that can be determined when the term of the
lease commences; therefore neither landlord nor tenant must
provide notice to the other party for the term of the lease to
expire on the appropriate date.  But while no notice is required
at the expiration of a term of years commercial lease, it is good
practice for such a notice to be sent, usually by the landlord to
the tenant but the tenant can also send the notice to the
landlord.  Providing such notice ensures that there is no
confusion between the landlord and the tenant and if the notice
is provided in advance of the expiration of the lease then any
disagreements can be resolved before the expiration of the
lease.

But, regardless of the type of commercial lease, the landlord
and the tenant can always mutually agree to terminate the
lease.  An agreement to terminate a commercial lease should
be in writing to evidence such agreement and to ensure that
there is no confusion among the parties.


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Law Office of
Craig W. Little, P.A.