Tenant’s Request for Consent to Underlet Part of the Premises
This Tenant’s Request for Consent to Underlet Part of the Premises is a template letter for a Tenant to send to its Landlord asking for consent to underlet (or sublet) part of the premises. If the proposed underletting is of the whole of the Tenant’s premises, the Consent Request – Whole should be used instead.
This letter complies with the Protocol for Applications for Consent to Assign or Sublet. The Protocol can be found at http://www.propertyprotocols.co.uk.
Commercial leases generally prohibit underlettings without the Landlord’s consent. If the Tenant wishes to underlet, it will need to ask the Landlord for consent. The Landlord’s consent is usually given by way of a formal Licence to Underlet.
Not all leases allow underletting of part. If the lease contains an absolute prohibition on underletting part only of the premises the Landlord can refuse consent without having to give reasons. The Tenant should therefore check the terms of the lease carefully before requesting consent for an underletting of part.
The Protocol requires tenants to provide sufficiently detailed information about the terms of the proposed underlease, having particular regard to any requirements in the lease as to the terms on which a subletting may be permitted. When making a request for consent to underlet, the Tenant should provide a copy of the agreed Underlease Heads of Terms, including a plan showing the area to be underlet. If possible, the Tenant should also provide a copy of the agreed or current draft form of underlease. The Tenant should also include all relevant information about the proposed undertenant, to enable the Landlord to make a decision. Relevant information includes company details, references (if the proposed undertenant is an individual) and any other pertinent details.
Usually, the Landlord will be under a duty “not to unreasonably withhold or delay consent”. The Landlord must therefore deal promptly with the Tenant’s request for consent and must either agree that consent will be given or give reasonable grounds for refusing consent. This duty only arises once the Landlord has received full information about the proposed underletting, hence the need to ensure that all relevant information is included in the Tenant’s letter.
Case law suggests that the Landlord’s decision should be made within days or weeks, rather than months, although this will depend on the circumstances. If the matter is particularly urgent from the Tenant’s point of view, this should be made clear in the letter. There is optional wording dealing with timescale and urgency.
Optional phrases / clauses are enclosed in square brackets. These should be read carefully and selected so as to be compatible with one another. Unused options should be removed from the document.
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