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Subletting refers to a tenant effectively transferring their rented property to someone else. In practice, the majority of leases will contain a clause to restrict subletting by tenants, either absolutely or conditionally upon obtaining the landlord’s consent.

In cases involving commercial property, subletting is more common and as such, will be more likely to lead to disputes between landlord and tenant.

Illegal subletting means that the transfer was not lawful, either because it was absolutely prohibited according to the terms of the lease, or because the landlord has not given consent, although it should be noted that refusal should not be considered unreasonable. In cases of illegal subletting, the landlord may apply for a court order against the sub-lease or in extreme cases for the forfeiture of the lease itself.

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In defending an action for subletting, the tenant may submit that the landlord acted unreasonably in withholding their consent, and may even claim compensation, known as damages, for any consequential financial loss that they have suffered.

Because disputes between landlords and tenants can escalate very quickly, it is essential to get legal advice as soon as possible when an issue arises, with a view to reaching resolution before an action has to be brought. The expert property law solicitors at Ackroyd Legal have diverse experience in acting for both landlords and tenants when disputes arise. We will look at all of the facts of your case and provide clear, practical advice on the next steps.

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