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In the late 1970’s Gerry Rafferty sang ‘if you get it wrong you’ll get it right next time’, but that is normally not an option when giving legal notices, as a recent case shows.
It involved a tenant wishing to vacate premises by terminating its lease with the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). The property was managed for RBS by another company, Schroder Property Investment Management Ltd (SPIM).
The lease provided that if the tenant wished to terminate the lease, the landlord had to be given nine months’ notice, which in this case had to be given by 3 October 2009. The lease also stated that the notice had to be served on SPIM. The notice to break the lease was duly served on RBS in September 2009, but the notice to SPIM was not served until December 2009.
The High Court held that time was of the essence in the service of both of the notices and SPIM’s notice also had to be served by 3 October 2009.
The notice to break the lease was therefore ineffective.