QLD Lease Breach Notice: Guidelines for Landlords

This article offers you a practical and essential guideline to Queensland Lease Breaches for Landlords.

A Form 7 Notice to Remedy Breach, often referred to as a “Breach Notice” or “PLA Form 7”, is usually issued to a tenant under a commercial lease in Queensland when they have violated the lease terms. Breach reasons may include failure to pay rent, using the premises for unauthorised purposes, or engaging in prohibited activities.

Issuing a Breach Notice is governed by Section 124 of the Property Law Act 1974 (Qld) (“PLA”). Adhering to the PLA’s strict requirements is crucial; failure to comply can render the Breach Notice and any subsequent actions invalid.

Key requirements under the PLA include:

  • The Notice must be in writing.
  • It must be served on the tenant according to legislative requirements or as agreed in the lease terms.
  • The Notice must specify the particular breach complained of.
  • If the breach is remediable, the Notice must require the lessee to rectify it.
  • If the landlord seeks compensation for the breach, the Notice should demand payment.
  • The tenant must be given a reasonable time to comply.
  • Failure to provide a compliant Breach Notice can lead to serious consequences. For instance, if an invalid Breach Notice is used by the landlord to lock out a tenant from the premises, the tenant may be entitled to compensation for loss and damages.

Courts have historically deemed Breach Notices invalid for various reasons, such as the omission of required elements like the “Note” found in the approved form or insufficient time given to remedy the breaches.

A properly prepared and served Breach Notice empowers the landlord to re-enter and take control of the premises if desired. It’s advisable for landlords to enlist the services of an experienced property lawyer to issue Breach Notices to mitigate potential costly repercussions. NB Property Law can support you with such a process.

Commercial and Retail Shop Leases – Notice to Remedy Breach of Covenant

Most leases grant lessors (landlords) the right to terminate a lease prematurely due to a breach of covenant or essential term by the lessee (tenant). The specifics of these covenants vary between leases. Breaches may include failure to maintain insurance, pay rent, or adhere to other lease terms.

Generally, the lessor must issue a Notice to Remedy Breach of Covenant before terminating the lease. However, the validity of such notices can be disputed. It’s crucial to have a solicitor draft the Notice to avoid delays and costly errors.

Form 7 Notice to Remedy Breach of Covenant

The lessor must issue the lessee a notice in a specific format, typically a Form 7 Notice to Remedy Breach of Covenant under Section 124 of the Property Law Act 1974 (Qld). This Notice must:

  1. Specify the breach.
  2. Require the tenant to rectify the breach if possible.
  3. Demand compensation if applicable.
  4. Allow the lessee reasonable time to comply.
  5. The Notice must also be served according to specific requirements.

What Constitutes a Reasonable Time?

The lessor must grant the lessee reasonable time to rectify the breach, where possible. This is crucial because failure to do so may enable the lessee to challenge the lease termination. The adequacy of the time given depends on various factors, including the purpose of the notice and the nature of the alleged breach.

Compliance with Notice Requirements

Courts rigorously assess compliance with Form 7 Notices. In the Queensland Supreme Court case of Tyrell & Anor v Jescro Enterprise Pty Ltd, a Form 7 Notice to Remedy Breach of Covenant was deemed invalid because it omitted a crucial “note” present in the approved form, despite conveying the information elsewhere. This strict stance underscores the importance of adherence to notice requirements.

Consequences of an Invalid Notice

Failing to provide a valid Notice to Remedy Breach of Covenant or serve it correctly can have serious repercussions. For instance, if an invalid notice leads to the lessee being locked out of the premises, they may be entitled to compensation for loss and damages.

Our team is well-versed in a range of specialties, so you can be confident that we have the knowledge to assist you no matter your challenge or concern. Whether you require legal advice for personal or professional matters, you can be confident that your best interests are protected.

Reach out to NB Property Law today for a complimentary, obligation-free consultation.

Kayleigh Swift, Director

Kayleigh Swift is the Director of NB Property Law, where she also showcases her expertise in Commercial and Residential property matters. Prior to joining NoBorders Law Group, Kayleigh was part of a commercial property team in a mid-sized firm and held a position in a local council’s property department.

Kayleigh Swift
[email protected]
(07) 3876 5111