MGA acts for evicted tenant in case of alleged unconscionable conduct and breach of COVID regulations
MGA has advised the owner of a popular burger restaurant outlet to commence proceedings against its former landlord, Delfin Distributors Pty Ltd (Delfin Distributors), Peter Joseph Willis Verco (Dr Verco) and real estate agent Pro Realty Pty Ltd (Pro Realty) in connection with the burger shop’s alleged unlawful eviction from a retail shop premises in September 2020.
Delfin Distributors, and its director Dr Verco, own and operate the commercial retail premises at 291 Unley Road Malvern known as Malvern Shopping Centre.
It is alleged that the landlord, Dr Verco and real estate agent Pro Realty engaged in unconscionable conduct in evicting the restaurant outlet owner during the SA government’s moratorium on commercial lease evictions.
Under the Covid 19 Emergency Response (Commercial Leases No 2) Regulations 2020 (SA), commercial tenants who suffered turnover reductions due to COVID-19 were protected from evictions for matters such as non-payment of rent.
It is also alleged that the landlord evicting the burger shop without cause, in breach of the lease agreement in place and in breach of section 10 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1936 (SA).
“Our client alleges that Delfin Distributors evicted him to replace him with a tenant who was willing to pay a higher rent, in spite of our client having a signed lease agreement with Delfin Distributors.
“Our client also alleges that the eviction was unconscionable for several reasons, including that the eviction occurred without notice during the SA government’s moratorium on commercial tenancy evictions.
The burger shop owner has also commenced proceedings against the director of Delfin Distributors, Dr Verco, in his personal capacity. It is alleged Dr Verco engaged on unconscionable conduct, and unlawfully interfered in the contractual relationship between the burger shop and Delfin Distributors.
Based on court documents filed in the District Court registry, the landlord and Dr Verco do not deny evicting the burger outlet owner, but deny the eviction was unlawful.
Pro Realty has been joined to the proceedings and is defending an unconscionable conduct claim and negligence claim in connection with its involvement in the eviction. Pro Realty is considering action against several other real estate agents who were evolved in the initial leasing and subsequent re-leasing of the premises.
The case is ongoing.
The team at Mark Gustavsson & Associates are specialist corporate commercial and litigation lawyers and have particular interest in representing clients in property disputes on a pro bono basis or low bono basis.
If you are a tenant and believe you have been treated unfairly by your landlord, you can contact the Mark Gustavsson & Associates team for a no obligation chat to discuss your options. Contact us today on (08) 7079 7651 or firstname.lastname@example.org