Retail and Commercial Leasing Act Amendment Bill 2019
The State Government has today (3/07/2019) introduced into Parliament a series of amendments to the Retail and Commercial Leases Act 1995.
The amendments aim to build on the existing protective measures for lessees under the Act and include:
- Allowing leases to move in and out of the Act;
- Clarifying the application of GST;
- Establishing a formal process through the Valuer-General to review the rent threshold which currently stands at $400,000.
- Providing an option of a landlord to register a new lease which is above the current $400,000 threshold so that the lease will not be captured by the Act should the threshold increase;
- Requiring increased requirements for disclosure of information by landlords to tenants; Increasing penalties for breaches of the Act (broadly in line with CPI between 1995 and 2015) and introducing two new penalties;
- Increasing the value of a bond from up to four weeks rent to up to three months’ rent; Amending the definition of a public company, and also providing protection to charity groups which may use a public company structure but are registered with the Australian Charities and Not for Profit Commission;
- Excluding overseas companies from coverage of the Act if they are registered on an international stock exchange:
A number of technical amendments are also included in the Bill.
These proposed amendments align with the Government’s agenda for small business as they will assist in making South Australia a more attractive place to invest and grow business.