Ellis v Rowbotham: CA 1900

The plaintiff had let and the defendant had taken a tenancy of premises at a rent payable quarterly in advance. The tenancy agreement had provided that if rent should be in arrears for 14 days the plaintiff could regain possession by re-entry. A quarter’s rent became in arrears. The plaintiff gave notice and re-entered. The plaintiff sued for the unpaid rent which was due for the whole quarter during which the plaintiff had re-entered.
Held: The rent became due long before the need to have recourse to the Apportionment Act 1870 could arise. Rent payable in advance is not apportionable. The 1870 Act did not apply to rent payable in advance.
AL Smith and Romer LJJ explained that (i) the mischief that the 1870 Act was concerned to correct related solely to rent in arrear, and (ii) rent paid in advance could not be said to be ‘accruing from day to day’, unlike rent in arrear.


AL Smith LJ, Romer LJJ


[1900] 1 QB 740


Apportionment Act 1870


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedCanas Property Co v K L Television Services CA 1970
The rent under the lease was payable in advance on the usual quarter days and the landlord forfeited the lease by serving a writ ‘for instance on 25 April’.
Held: At common law on the breach of a covenant by a lessee, a lessor is entitled to . .
CitedQuirkco Investments Ltd v Aspray Transport Ltd ChD 23-Nov-2011
The defendant tenant said that it had exercised a break clause in the lease held of the claimant. The claimant said the break notice was ineffective because the defendant was in breach of the lease, not having paid an iinsurance service charge, and . .
CitedHildebrand v Lewis CA 1941
B had granted to L a sublease of premises where the rent was payable quarterly in advance. He fell into arrears with his rent and the landlord served on L a notice under the Law of Distress Amendment Act 1908 section 6 with the result that L became . .
CitedMarks and Spencer Plc v BNP Paribas Securities Services Trust Company (Jersey) Ltd and Another SC 2-Dec-2015
The Court considered whether, on exercising a break clause in a lease, the tenant was entitled to recover rent paid in advance.
Held: The appeal failed. The Court of Appeal had imposed what was established law. The test for whether a clause . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Landlord and Tenant

Updated: 15 May 2022; Ref: scu.450419