Landlord/tenant disputes can be complicated regardless of whether they are commercial or residential. That said Kentucky businesses that are involved in a commercial real estate landlord/tenant dispute, may be particularly interested in resolving the issue without going to court.
Commercial leases are complex contracts that often contain clauses that govern how disputes should be managed. Here are some steps you can take to try to resolve your dispute amicably and efficiently.
Review your lease agreement carefully
Look for any provisions that specify how disputes should be resolved, such as mediation, arbitration or litigation. Also, check for any clauses that outline your rights and obligations as a tenant or landlord, such as maintenance, repairs, rent payments, security deposits, subleasing, etc. Make sure you understand what the lease says and what it does not say.
Communicate with your landlord or tenant in a respectful and professional manner. Try to identify the source of the dispute and the interests of both parties. Explain your position and listen to theirs. Avoid making accusations or threats. Instead, focus on finding common ground and workable solutions.
Consider hiring a lawyer or a mediator to help you negotiate a settlement. A lawyer can advise you on your legal options and represent you in any formal proceedings. A mediator can facilitate a dialogue between you and your landlord or tenant and help you reach a mutually acceptable agreement. Mediation is usually faster, cheaper and more confidential than litigation.
If you cannot resolve your dispute through negotiation or mediation, you may have to resort to arbitration or litigation. Arbitration is similar to a trial in that a neutral third party decides the outcome of the dispute based on the evidence and arguments presented by both sides. Arbitration is usually binding and enforceable by law. Litigation is a process where a judge or a jury decides the outcome of the dispute in a court of law. Litigation can be costly and time-consuming. It can also unwanted attract public attention.
Commercial real estate landlord/tenant disputes can be stressful and disruptive for both parties. However, by following these steps, you may be able to resolve your dispute in a way that preserves your relationship and protects your interests.