Resources
News

Andrew Nevas appears before Connecticut Supreme Court regarding COVID rent dispute

December 3, 2021 Media Mentions

The pandemic has altered the landscape for businesses across the country, not only in the way in which they conduct business, but also their physical presence within the community. An industry that was especially affected by the pandemic was the restaurant industry.

While the restaurant industry suffered, building owners and landlords across the country were still required to make mortgage and utility payments to ensure their properties were not foreclosed upon. In many cases, landlords were forced to take legal action against their tenants due to failure to pay their rent.

On November 16, Andrew Nevas appeared in front of the Connecticut Supreme Court to argue such a case. Attorney Nevas’ client, AGW SoNo Partners, is a real estate manager and investor, owning commercial property in several locations, including Norwalk, Connecticut. The dispute is regarding a 10-year commercial lease between AGW SoNo Partners and Downtown Soho, LLC for a restaurant and bar in Norwalk.

In a trial earlier this year, AGW SoNo Partners sued Downtown Soho, LLC, for breach of contract and failure to make payments on their lease between March 2020 and September 2020. The Court awarded AGW SoNo Partners their seven months of missed lease payments and damages, totaling $200,308.

However, recently Downtown Soho, LLC, appealed the Courts decision arguing once again that Governor Lamont’s pandemic restrictions on restaurants made it virtually impossible for them to meet the requirements of their lease and that they should be freed from having to pay the back rent. Nevas argued that the Governor’s order did not absolve the restaurant from their obligations under their lease. “There was no impediment to actual performance here,” Nevas said. “They were open for six months without paying rent.”

In a recent Law360 Pulse article, Nevas said this case would set precedent for future cases and that he believed this case will be “the first time that the Supreme Court of any state in the country has addressed the issue of the impact that COVID has on the rights and responsibilities of commercial landlords and tenants.”

The Court is currently reviewing this and other matters from its most recent term.

Firm Highlights

Matter

Elections and Constitutional Law: Successfully Challenged Certification of Initiative Petition

In a victory for consumers and the ride-hailing public, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court recently barred the Secretary of State from placing on the November ballot initiative petitions proposed by companies such as Uber...

News

The Boston Bar Association Adds Verrill Attorney David M. Friedman to Council

News

Verrill Welcomes Team of Highly Skilled Litigators to Maine Office

(August 3, 2022) – Verrill is pleased to welcome experienced trial attorneys Philip Coffin, Jeffrey Russell, and Cyrus Cheslak, all resident in the firm’s Portland, Maine office. All three attorneys, in addition to two...

Matter

Patent Litigation: Mesenchymal Stem Cells

Represented small biotech company and two academic researchers against large pharmaceutical company in dispute over inventorship of several patents relating to mesenchymal stem cells and their uses, as well as defending against numerous state...

News

Life After 'Varsity Blues': What's Next For The Boston Feds

Publication/Podcast

Early Asset Forfeiture Is Key Part Of Criminal Defense Plans

Verrill attorney David Lazarus was recently published in Law360 for his article "Early Asset Forfeiture Is Key Part Of Criminal Defense Plans." In the article Lazarus explains "asset forfeiture is a component of almost...

Matter

Patent Litigation: Semiconductors

Represented semiconductor manufacturer in patent case against competitor in litigation in U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, in which both sides asserted patents relating to power management and A-D converters; conducted Markman...

News

39 Verrill Attorneys Named 2022 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

News

Verrill Welcomes Back Attorney Stephen B. Segal to Firm’s Litigation & Trial Group

News

77 Verrill Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers® 2023, Including Six Named Lawyers of the Year

Contact Verrill at (855) 307 0700