Questions Concerning Decree 4,169, suspending payments of rent

Answers to some questions that could arise in connection with Decree 4,169, dated March 23, 2020, suspending payments of rent for commercial premises and homes, specifically as regards premises used for commercial purposes. 

  1. What would be considered premises  used for commercial purposes?

Given that the Decree provides no definition, presumably they would be the types of premises mentioned in the Law Governing the Leasing of Properties for Commercial Use

  1. What are the properties used for commercial purposes that are covered in that Law?

2.a Properties housing businesses engaged in commercial activities or in providing commercial services, regardless of whether they  occupy a stand-alone property or are part of a larger building. 

2.b Unless otherwise defined, properties  where these kinds  of activities are being carried out  would be considered such and, as such, may be located in:

  • shopping malls
  • residential buildings
  • buildings used for tourism
  • health-care buildings, when not used as doctors’ offices, operating rooms or laboratories
  • educational buildings
  • part of a warehouse or parking lot, but not used as storage spaces alone.

3) What is the situation in the case of buildings housing offices for doctors and other professionals?

Based on the provisions of the two legal instruments mentioned above, they would not be subject to the suspension ordered in the Decree.

4) What is the situation for laboratories that are located in leased premises but are closed?

Based on the provisions of the two legal instruments mentioned above, they would not be subject to the suspension ordered in the Decree.

5) What is the situation for warehouses and parking lots?

They would be subject to the suspension.

6)  What is the situation in the case of storerooms?

Based on the provisions of the two legal instruments mentioned above, they would not be subject to the suspension

7) According to Article 1, paragraph one of the Decree, payments of rent and “other monetary amounts agreed to in the respective leases” are suspended for the term stipulated. What, therefore, is the situation when it has been agreed that the condominium fees are to be paid by the tenant? 

The Decree is very clear in this case: The tenant cannot be forced to pay the fees. The owner of the property will be responsible for payment of these fees for the duration of the suspension.

Julio Bacalao del Castillo 

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