Can a lease be considered void if, other than the signature line,all places where the tenant was supposed to initial were unsigned?

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Can a lease be considered void if, other than the signature line,all places where the tenant was supposed to initial were unsigned?

At the end of the lease agreement, both tenant and landlord signed. However, parts such as “Tenant agrees that failure to pay Rent when due shall be presumed to be a willful violation of the lease” where there was a line with the words “Initial” were not.

Asked on May 17, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It is doubtful that  this would void the contract or lease:

First, when construing leases and other contracts and determining whether they are enforceable, the courts will look to the entire agreement. If the agreement as a whole was signed, as you indicate it was, it is very likely that the court will conclude that all it's terms or paragraphs are themselves enforerceable.

Second, even if the court were to conclude that a specific paragraph or term is not enforceable for some reasons--such as if the court concluded that the term you cite had to be initiated separately--it would almost always enforce the rest of the contract, assumingit is possible to do so.


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