Village Commons, LLC v. Marion County Prosecutor’s Office
Court of Appeals of Indiana
882 N.E.2d 210 (2008)
The Marion County Prosecutor’s Office (MCPO) (defendant) leased the basement of a building from Village Commons, LLC and Rynalco, Inc. (Landlord) (plaintiffs) for an office and evidence storage space. The seven-year lease began in August 1999. The lease provided that the Landlord would maintain the premises, but limited the remedies available to the MCPO in case of breach to the right to sue for an injunction or damages. The MCPO had no right to terminate the lease or withhold rent. The property began having water leaks in 2001. Repeated leaks caused substantial damage to the premises. Further, the water issues damaged boxes of evidence. The Landlord instructed the MCPO to move evidence out of problem areas. Though the Landlord made repairs, it failed to fix the problem. The Landlord declined to pay for mold remediation, despite possible health risks. The MCPO vacated the building in January 2003 and stopped paying rent. The Landlord sued for breach. The MCPO counterclaimed for wrongful eviction. The trial court held that the exclusive-remedy provisions in the Lease did not preempt the MCPO’s defenses and that the Landlord had actually and constructively evicted the MCPO. The court awarded the MCPO damages, and the Landlord appealed to the Court of Appeals of Indiana.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Riley, J.)
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