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5 Tips for Resolving a Commercial Lease Dispute

5 Tips for Resolving a Commercial Lease Dispute

Commercial lease disputes can be challenging and time-consuming, especially when they involvecomplex legal issues and the high stakes of possibly losing a business location. Whether you’re a landlord or a tenant, resolving a commercial lease dispute efficiently and professionally is crucial for maintaining a successful business relationship and ongoing trade. If you’re currently engaged in or thinking about initiating a commercial lease dispute, this article will detail five tips you can use to resolve this type of dispute promptly and effectively.

Understand the Lease Agreement & Relevant Legislation

The first step in resolving a commercial lease dispute is to thoroughly understand the lease agreement and any relevant legislation. Familiarise yourself with the terms and conditions of the lease, as well as any applicable laws, such as the Retail Leases Act or other state-specific regulations. This knowledge will help you identify potential breaches or violations and provide a solid foundation for your negotiations or legal action.

Maintain Open & Honest Communication

Maintaining open and honest communication is essential for resolving commercial lease disputes amicably. Both parties should be willing to listen to each other’s concerns, acknowledge their positions and work towards a mutually beneficial solution. If possible, try to avoid aggressive or confrontational language, as this can escalate the situation and make resolution more difficult. Instead, focus on expressing your concerns calmly and professionally, while seeking to understand the other party’s perspective.

Seek Legal Advice Early

Involving a legal expert early in the dispute resolution process can help you better understand your rights and obligations and provide valuable guidance on the best course of action. A lawyer with expertise in commercial lease disputes can help you review your lease agreement, identify potential issues and advise you on the most appropriate negotiation or litigation strategies. Their expertise can also be invaluable in drafting any necessary legal documents, such as a notice of breach or a deed of settlement.

Consider Alternative Dispute Resolution Methods

Before resorting to litigation, consider alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods, such as mediation or arbitration. These processes can be more cost-effective, time-efficient and less confrontational than going to court, and they often result in more satisfactory outcomes for both parties. ADR can also help preserve the business relationship between the landlord and tenant, which may be particularly important if the lease is ongoing.

When selecting an ADR method, consider factors such as the complexity of the dispute, the desired level of confidentiality and the willingness of both parties to participate in the process. Some lease agreements may even specify the use of specific ADR methods before initiating litigation, so be sure to review your lease for any such provisions.

Be Prepared for Litigation

While ADR methods are often successful in resolving commercial lease disputes, sometimes litigation is inevitable. If you find yourself facing court proceedings, it’s crucial to be well-prepared and have a strong legal team representing your interests. Ensure your lawyer has experience in commercial lease disputes and a solid understanding of the relevant legislation and case law. Keep detailed records of all correspondence and documentation relating to the dispute, as these may be crucial pieces of evidence in court.


Resolving a commercial lease dispute effectively requires a combination of thorough understanding of the lease agreement, open communication, early legal advice, consideration of alternative dispute resolution and preparedness for litigation if necessary. By following these tips, you can help protect your interests while working towards a fair and mutually beneficial outcome.

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