Apr30

FAVORABLE RESULT – LANDLORD TENANT DISPUTE

Ninos Saroukhanioff and Dennis Newitt obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of their clients "landlords," in a landlord-tenant dispute in the case of Newco International, Inc. v. DOE Insurance Company.

Plaintiff, a furniture manufacturing company, leased warehouse space from the defendant landlord. After a rainstorm, the warehouse roof leaked, allowing water into the building which damaged the tenant's property, including finished goods, materials and stored boxes of records. The lease provided that the tenant was responsible for paying for repairs and maintenance to the building, but the defendant landlord had undertaken roof repairs prior to the loss because the tenant did not have the ability to pay.

The tenant sued the landlord and the roofing company he hired for its property damage. The plaintiff claimed the lease did not apply to the company since the lessees were the individual officers of the company. Although plaintiffs claimed millions of dollars in damages and lost business income, the case settled for $40,000, after several depositions established plaintiff was overreaching on it damages claim, and the fact that it had already collected payments from its own insurance carrier. Part of the settlement included the tenants agreeing to renew the lease and be responsible for maintenance, repairs, utilities and property taxes.