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Alex J.
Alex J., Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 3695
Experience:  Solicitors 2 years plus PQE
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If a person acting as a UK consulatant for a German company

Resolved Question:

If a person acting as a UK consulatant for a German company was looking after a rented property and living there)this house was used as an office and management accommodation residence for both UK and German personnel on a regular basis.

After six years the UK person looking after the property (no rent was paid as there was no written agreement to do so) has now received a back claim for these six years for 50% of the rent.

The German company had a sole tenancy agreement with the landlords agent and duly paid the rent montly.

The German company are now trying to claim a substantial sum of money to offset fees and commission to the sales agent who looked after the rented property on their behalf.

The agreement for no rent was verbal, there is no signed written ahreement to say otherwise and there was never any invoices issue during the entire 6 years.

My question is can there be a legal claim withour mutually signed agreements, thank you for a reply
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you for your question and welcome.

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will assist you.

Was it always agreed the accommodation would be free? Was there ever any mention the UK person would have to pay rent?

Kind regards

AJ
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Hi, It was always agreed verbally from the beginning (never any written agreements to pay) that the accommodation was to be free, never were there any requests for payment until the UK Consultant left the German company.


 


regards David

Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you.

In summary then there is no contractual obligation on him to back pay the rent. That is not part of the agreement and to deduct it from the sales commission they would need a specific clause in his sales contract.

You cannot unilaterally enforce a contractual agreement on someone that never existed in the first place, it is against principles of equity. There are two scenarios;
1. If they tried to sue him for the money he would have a defence of "Promissory Estoppel" under the Famous "High Trees House Case". This is where someone has acted in reliance on the conduct of another party to their detriment and that party has since changed their position. He could quite easily prove from the lack of demand of any payment for rent that it was always agreed the accommodation would be free. The burden of proof on the company to show a contractual obligation to pay existed would be very difficult.

2. If they tried to deduct the money from his sales commission (assuming they have no specific claw back right) then they will be in breach of contract.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards

AJ
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