Shifting the burden of proof

By Xiahou Songjie, Dacheng Law Offices

In December 2006, the developer of a shopping centre and a lessee entered into a premises lease. The contract specifically provided that the term of the lease would commence on “the date on which the leased property opens for business as a whole”. However, it did not specify the date on which the shopping centre was to open for business as a whole.

Delay occurs

For reasons attributable to the developer, the lessee was not able to enter the site for a certain period after the execution of the contract, and was thus prevented from carrying out the necessary fitting out works and commence its operations.

Xiahou Songjie
Dacheng Law Offices

In March 2007, after the lessee was finally ready to open for business, the developer announced that the shopping centre would open for business on 30 March. However, due to the testing of the water facilities, electrical equipment, elevators and other such items, the shopping centre was not able to open for business as a whole on that date.

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Xiahou Songjie, a partner at Dacheng Law Offices, specializes in litigation & arbitration, enforcement, real estate & construction, corporate law, financing, insurance and investment.

大成律事务所 Dacheng Law Offices

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