Attorney Mrs. Núria Angulo Roig wins a trial against the German multinational “Commerz Real Investmentgesellschaft”, owner of the Shopping Center Espai Girones.
The Civil Court of First Instance number 2 from Girona (Spain) pronounces a sentence which rejects a claim presented by the owner of the Shopping Center Espai Girones in Salt, Girona (Spain)
against shop tenants who already left the premises more than one year ago.
Despite having returned the vacant possession to the Shopping Center by handing over the keys to a notary, the Shopping Center took legal action in order to claim the rent till the end of the five years rental contract as they did not accept that the contract terminated in January 2010 despite prior notice by reliable means of communication by the tenants.
During the trial celebrated on 11th January 2011, Shopping Center´s attorney claimed the tenants a sum of more than €30.000,.- corresponding to the rent from December 2009 till the end of the contract.
Attorney´s defendants, Mrs. Núria Angulo Roig, opposed categorically to the claim of the Shopping Center as she manifested that once the vacant possession of the premises was delivered, the keys handed over to a notary in January 2010 and communicated by reliable means to the property, a lawsuit claiming the rents of 2010 till the end of the contract could impossibly succeed.
During his speech before the judge, Shopping Center´s manager entered into several contradictions as he firstly denied to have been notified the vacant possession of the premises while later on he acknowledged the handing over of the keys to the notary. Therefore, the judge ruled in favor of the tenants as she understood that it was proven that the rental contract was terminated when the premises were delivered in vacant possession in January 2010, hence no rental monies could be claimed to the tenants from that date on.
Legal implication of the sentence:
The present sentence has further implication to other similar cases where shop tenants with a definite term rental contract could terminate the contractual relationship by seeking protection in this judicial criterion.
During the eviction trial the judge stated that it is not possible to evict someone who already delivered the vacant possession with no pending payment rents.
The ruling also stresses the obstructionism of the Shopping Center for their unjustified refusal of the keys and the unacceptance of the termination of the contract and the judicial sentence quotes as follows: “it would be sufficient the unacceptance of the termination by the property owner to oblige the tenant to the carry out with the contractual term, which would obviously bring to an unbalanced obligational situation which cannot be protected”.