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TRINITI JUREX lawyer Artūras Vaišvila and his team successfully defended the client’s interests in a case against the plaintiff regarding the rent for premises. The plaintiff sought to recover from the client EUR 79,000 in unpaid rent for three years. Although no lease agreement had been signed, the claimant based its entitlement to rent on the verbal lease agreement, the lease relationship of more than 5 years, the VAT invoices issued by the claimant and accepted by the client, the act of reconciliation of debts between the parties and the schedule of payment of the debt signed by the client.
The TRINITI JUREX team succeeded in persuading the Court that there was no lease relationship between the parties, that the mere issue of a VAT invoice is not sufficient to conclude that the parties were bound by a legal relationship of lease, that the main purpose of the VAT invoice is tax accounting, that none of the documents submitted in the case records that a lease agreement was concluded between the parties and that the essential terms of the lease agreement, such as the price of the lease of the premises, the term of the lease, the procedure for making payments, etc., were agreed upon, and that the lease agreement is not in fact a lease. Therefore, the Court concludes that it is more likely that the parties had a legal relationship of usufruct, rather than of lease, in respect of the premises, and that the client does not owe the applicant any money for the use of the premises during the period in question.
Conclusion: if you want to protect your interests as a tenant or landlord, it is essential to exercise your rights properly, in particular by concluding a contract and by taking the other steps necessary for the performance of that contract, and by taking timely and appropriate measures when one or other party fails to perform its obligations properly.