Orders of the Day — Landlord and Tenant (Requisitioned Land) Bill.

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons on 21st January 1942.

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Mr. Morris:

further recommended that it would be unreasonable to give the right of disclaimer where there is a long period of the lease still to run. Otherwise a lessee with a long and onerous lease would be able to get rid of his obligation merely because the premises had been requisitioned for a short time. Mr. Morris therefore recommended that the right to disclaim should be available only where the requisition is likely to last for a period which constitutes a substantial part of the remaining period of the lease, and that will be given effect to in Clause 8. Speaking by and large, we give this right only in cases where the unexpired term of the lease is five years or less. The material date is either the passing of the Bill into an Act, in the case of previous requisitions, or in the case of future requisitions you date your five years from the date of the requisitioning. The right to disclaim is retrospective in this sense. Tenants who have suffered from a requisition before the passing of the Act, and whose premises remain still under requisition, can give notice to disclaim within three months from the passing of the Act, and in that case the disclaimer operates from the date of the passing of the Act. We felt that it would be undesirable and, indeed, impracticable to go right back and give further retrospective effect to these proposals, because to do so would lead to very complicated results in regard to money which had already been paid.