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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Dear Sir/Madam, I wonder if you can assist in clarifying

Resolved Question:

Dear Sir/Madam,

I wonder if you can assist in clarifying the following:

(i) Is a lease for commercial D1 building valid if it features my name incorrectly?
(ii) Is a landlord entitled to charge me to change my name on the lease even though it was their error?
(iii) Is the lease valid if it is signed by the landlord's secretary and one other (who was not a witness but not a Director either) and not signed by the tenant (Lessee)?

Looking forward to your assistance; your feedback would be greatly appreciated.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

I assume you signed it please?

Customer:

No ma'am. The agreement was drawn up between two solicitors. I then asked to receive a copy of it and after a while one copy was sent to me, Because my name and colleague's name were both mis-spelt, we have not signed it; they have quoted us £350 each to change our names on the lease.

Alex Watts :

Did you sign the original agreement?

Customer:

Apologies on missing your question earlier. They sent us some Heads of terms (subject to contract) which we were asked to review and confirm what we agree to or not. We negotiated until the terms were mutually agreed. Whilst the lease was being drawn up, we needed to gain access to the premises and were therefore given the keys whilst lease was being finalized. We were told this would be sent to us. When we had been in occupancy of the premises for about a month, I rang my solicitor at the time and queried when we were to expect this. I was told that she (solicitor) had moved offices, but had left the file containing the lease signed by the landlord with her former firm. I had to go to that office to collect it. After we read it we contacted her about the errors in the name, at which point she advised us to contact them to change it as she had written our names clearly. This is when the landlord's agents said we needed to pay to have the names changed. So to date, the lease was not by me or my colleague, and the landlord had not requested the signed copy. What they had sent our then solicitor (which we now have) is a "certified true copy of the original".

Alex Watts :

So you have NOT signed any copy of a lease?

Customer:

No ma'am.

Alex Watts :

But now they want to charge to amend?

Customer:

Yes ma'am.

Alex Watts :

1) The lease is NOT valid if you and the Landlord have not signed it

Alex Watts :

2) The Landlord I dont think is entitled to charge for a name change- they should have got it right in the first place.

Alex Watts :

3) No, its their error, not your fault

Alex Watts :

4) Its not valid unless signed by the Landlord or their agent if the lease specifies that

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

Yes please ma'am, please clarify this for me:

Customer:

The landlord secretary and an "authorised person" has signed. but we have not given the request for payment to change our name. Does that make it a valid lease?

Alex Watts :

Yes of course

Alex Watts :

Yes, if your name is XXXXX XXXXX there is no doubt who you are then it will be ok

Customer:

Even if it has not been signed by us? We did request they do it under the name of our organisation and instead they did it on our personal names and addresses.

Alex Watts :

If its not been signed then its not valid and not binding.

Customer:

So that means, it has been signed only by them and not by us. So it is not effectively a valid lease.

Alex Watts :

Thats right

Customer:

Thank you ma'am. You have been very helpful. We were worried because on the initial Letter and Heads of Terms (subject to contract) received from the landlord's solicitor, it clearly refers to our organisation but on the lease they put our 'misspelt' names, which we did not sign.

Alex Watts :

Yes do not worry, its not your fault.

Alex Watts :

If this answers your question could I invite you leave feedback on my service which I hope has been excellent today, if you need more information or help then please click reply.


Please remember that I am always happy to help if you have future questions, even if I am in Court I can normally respond within a few hours. For future information, please start them with ‘For Alex W’.


 


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Customer:

In summary could you tell us what steps we ought to take in this regard? Thank you ma'am we will leave feedback accordingly.

Alex Watts :

You should write and say that you do not accept the lease and that you are not responsible for the changes.

Alex Watts :

If the Landlord got it wrong then the Landlord ought to bear the cost of this.

Customer:

Thank you Ms Watts.

Alex Watts :

All the best with this.

Customer:

Many thanks! Your service is appreciated.

Ash and other Law Specialists are ready to help you