What if my lease states that I have to be open during certain days and hours?

This is where a Force Majeure clause would come in handy. A very common feature of Force Majeure clauses is that they usually excuse a party from performing due to an unexpected operation of law or government action. Governor Brown’s Executive Order No. 20-12, issued on March 23, 2020, mandated the closure of certain businesses and required working from home or very limited service of others (such as restaurants).

Certainly no one could have anticipated the global pandemic caused by the coronavirus. Since Governor Brown’s Executive Order made certain business operations impossible, it is likely that the Force Majeure clause in your lease excuses you from this particular requirement. Even if you do not have a Force Majeure clause in your lease, you are still likely excused from performing this lease obligation if remaining open would violate the Governor’s Order. A court would not require you to violate the pandemic restrictions in order to comply with lease terms. Clarify this term during your negotiations with the property owner to make sure you both are on the same page.

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1. What should I do if I can’t pay the rent for my small business?
2. Can the federal CARES Act help me pay my rent?
3. Does Oregon’s “no evictions” order apply to commercial leases?
4. Can I negotiate a change to my lease?
5. Why would the property owner be willing to negotiate changes to my lease?
6. How do I approach negotiating with the property owner?
7. What are some terms that I can consider offering the property owner?
8. If I am able to reach an agreement with the property owner, can we just agree over the phone?
9. I can’t pay rent and can’t reach the property owner. Should I send them a letter explaining? Is that enough to forestall an eviction in the future?
10. What if I already missed a rent payment and the property owner sent me a default notice?
11. Am I still responsible for paying rent if I have to close my business?
12. Will a “Force Majeure” or “Impossibility” clause get me out of the lease?
13. What if my lease states that I have to be open during certain days and hours?
14. What if the property owner wants to cancel my lease because the location is good and they think they can get more money from another tenant?
15. What if I have to declare bankruptcy?
16. If I am a month-to-month tenant, how does this impact my lease?
17. I do not know if I have a lease (or can't find a copy of my lease). What should my next steps be?
18. Where can I find more resources?