Property II-JG - PROPERTY II Professor G Minda St John's...

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P ROPERTY II Professor G. Minda St. John’s University School of Law Spring 2002 I Landlord and Tenant A) The Leasehold Estates 1) The Term of Years – lease for a fixed period of time (i) The beginning and end date must be set or computable by formula (ii) Common Law – no limit of number of years; Some states limit maximum duration by statutes (iii) Termination – Since termination is already set by the terms of the lease, no additional notice of termination is needed 2) The Periodic Tenancy continues from one period to next automatically, until notice of termination is given (i) Usually created by implication – if lease does not have an end date, but provides that rent is to be paid monthly, then periodic month-to-month tenancy is created (ii) Termination (a) Common Law (i) Year-to-Year tenancy - 6 month notice is required (ii) Month-to-Month tenancy – 1 month notice - Notice must terminate the lease on the last day of period, not in the middle of period (b) Modern – Some statutes provide for shorter notice – 30 day whether it is month-to-month or year-to-year - 30 days notice may terminate the lease even if in the middle of the term 3) The Tenancy at Will no stated duration of the lease and may be terminated at any time at will or death of one party (i) Some States have statutes that provide for notice even for tenancy at will (ii) Some court hold that if one party has the option to terminate at will, the other party has a similar option so the tenancy is at will (iii) However in NY if lease is terminable only at will of one party (T) the life estate for that party is created- T still must pay rent. Garner v. Gerrish . 4) The Tenancy at Sufferance – Holdovers – Tenant stays (holds over) after the termination of the lease (i) L has two options – must make an election, once choice is made L cannot change his mind: (a) Eviction of tenant (b) Consent (express or implied) to the creation of new tenancy Jeff Goland Page 1 5/13/2009
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(ii) Tenant has to intend to claim some sort of possession over the property – just leaving some staff behind does not constitute the hold over (iii) Critical illness prevents tenant from moving out – no hold over (iv) Restatement 2d: “Holding over results in a periodic tenancy measured by the way rent is computed, up to a maximum period of one year” (v) However, in some jurisdictions hold over will result in new term of years tenancy with the terms of original lease, but for no longer than a year B) Lease v. License C) Lease transfers the right of possession of property D) License gives the right of use of property (a) License does not have to satisfy Statute of Frauds – may be created orally (b) License is more of a contract, therefore (i) It can be easily assigned (ii) There is a contractual obligation to mitigate damages (c) License is revocable , unless there is a detrimental reliance on the license E) Selection of Tenants F) Common Law – historically, a seller or landlord was free to sell or lease to whomever he pleased G) Civil Rights Act § 1982 – bars racial and ethnic
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