Compensation for breaching lease contracts

The lawyer Andrés Martinez clarifies the doubts of the readers about leases and contracts.

Dora Patricia Duran presents the following case: “I have been in a rented apartment for eight years and I have paid my obligations on time.

In January, the real estate agency sent me a letter telling me that at the end of the expiration of the contract I must give them because the owner requested the property. Is it true that the law says that tenants must pay me 1.5 rental fees for each year lived or is it 1.5 fees for all years lived?

Indeed, the leasing law requires payment, but in the event that the lessor – upon expiration of the period – manifests as a cause for unilateral termination of the contract the will to terminate it. The compensation of 1.5 times the rental fee applies as long as the contract reaches, at least, four years of execution.

As of 2003, the payment is for the only time independent of the years that the property has been inhabited. Before, compensation was accounted for per year lived.

It is worth clarifying that a simple letter is not enough. It should be taken into account, among other aspects, that the delivery note must be made three months in advance, that in parallel with the communication, the tenant must be informed that the legal compensation will be paid and that the notice of termination of the lease and compensation must be made by authorized postal service.

In addition, compensation must be effectively recorded in favour of the lessee (prior order of the competent authority) within the three months prior to the date set for the unilateral termination of the contract.

The consignment will be made in the entities authorized by the National Government and the competent authority (in the case of Bogotá it is the Sub directorate of Housing Control); In addition, you will have to attach a copy of the title to the tenant or send him a communication immediately.

It is worth clarifying that the value of the compensation will be based on the income in force on the date of the notice. At the time of making the consignment, the reason for the compensation (the unilateral will of the landlord) will be recorded in the respective titles, as well as the name and precise address of the tenant or his representative.

If the tenant complies with the obligation to deliver the property on the specified date, they will receive the payment after the authorization is issued by the authority.

In the event that the tenant does not deliver the property, the landlord will have the right to have the compensation indicated; you can also start the restitution process before the judge. If the landlord desists to terminate the contract, he may request a refund of the amount paid.