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Retail Leases Act 2003: 2020 changes
Please note: the seven-day timeframes in the disclosure statements linked to below will be updated to note the required 14 days once the Retail Leases Regulations 2013 have been updated to reflect the 2020 changes to retail leasing. For more information about these changes, see our Retail Leases Act 2003 web page.
What is a disclosure statement?
A disclosure statement is a document that a landlord must give the tenant when entering into or renewing a lease. It outlines essential lease information so the tenant can understand, at a glance, the key elements of the lease.
It can include:
- the term or duration of the lease
- whether there are options for further terms
- the occupancy costs for leasing the premises (including rent and any outgoings)
- specific information for shopping centre leases
- the tenant’s fit-out requirements
- if there are any relocation or demolition clauses.
A landlord must give the tenant a disclosure statement and copy of the proposed lease no later than 14 days before the lease is entered into. If changes are made to the copy of the proposed lease that had been given to the tenant, the landlord must notify the tenant of these changes when giving them the updated lease no later than 14 days before the lease is entered into.
If the landlord gives the disclosure statement and proposed lease less than 14 days before the lease entry date, the lease will start 14 days after the disclosure statement and proposed lease are given to the tenant.
For a lease renewal where a tenant has exercised or is entitled to exercise an option or the landlord and tenant have agreed on the lease renewal, the landlord must give the tenant a disclosure statement no later than 21 days before the end of the lease. The disclosure statement must set out any changes to the previous disclosure statement given to the tenant.
Types of disclosure statements
There are four types of disclosure statements that are used, depending on the circumstances. These disclosure statements can be found in the Retail Leases Regulations 2013. To access the individual disclosure statement schedule, click on the relevant link below.
Make sure you use the disclosure statement form that is most relevant to your situation.
- Schedule 1: Non-shopping centre retail premises
- Schedule 2: Shopping centre retail premises
- Schedule 3: Renewal of a lease
- Schedule 4: Assignment of a lease with an ongoing business
If a disclosure statement is misleading, false or incomplete, the tenant can take action that may result in the termination of a lease.
Please note, Schedules 1, 2 and 3 will be updated to reflect the change in requirements in relation to disclosure statements.
Depending on the type of retail lease, different sections in the Retail Leases Act 2003 state that a landlord must adhere to the following timings:
- Signing a new lease: a landlord must provide a disclosure statement to the tenant at least 14 days before the signing of a new lease.
- Exercising an option: if a tenant exercises an option to renew a lease or has the right to do so, the landlord must provide a copy of the schedule 3 disclosure statement to the tenant at least 21 days before the end of the current term of the lease.
- Agreement to renew a lease: if the landlord and tenant agree to renew the lease, the landlord must provide a copy of the schedule 3 disclosure statement to the tenant within 14 days of the parties having agreed to renew the lease.
- Providing the proposed tenant with a disclosure statement and other information – the Victorian Small Business Commission’s (VSBC) information brochure – Retail leases: important facts for tenants
- Disclosure Statements containing estimates of outgoings (section 17)
- Relevant legislation: Retail Leases Act 2003
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