Game Over

As published in our Talking Recovery blog, Game Retail Ltd is reeling from the effects of the Supreme Court’s refusal of permission to allow reconsideration of an earlier Court of Appeal decision[1] . This concludes a long running saga and confirms that administrators are liable to pay rent at a daily rate for periods during which they make use of leased premises, irrespective of the lease rent payment dates. Bad news for administrators. Good news for landlords.

To obtain permission to appeal to the Supreme Court, an applicant must show that the application raises an arguable point of law that is of general public importance. The Supreme Court clearly thought that Game could not satisfy this bearing in mind that the case had ‘already been the subject of judicial decision and reviewed on appeal’. 

So who cares?

Landlords for one, administrators for another.

Prior to the Court of Appeal decision in Game an unsatisfactory position had arisen in respect of when administrators/liquidators could be liable to pay rent. Before said decision, to Game an administrator could feasibly avoid paying an entire quarter’s rent, if that rent were payable in advance and fell due only one day prior to an administration order.

On the other hand, if an administration concluded on the day that rent, which is payable in advance, fell due then an administrator could be liable to pay an entire quarter’s rent for a period of time during which it was not in possession of, or using, the premises.

This unsatisfactory state of affairs has been resolved. The Supreme Court’s Order gives certainty to both landlords and insolvency practitioners acting for tenant companies. Clever timing by administrators will no longer mean landlords are out of pocket.

This post was edited by Phil Scully. For more information, email

[1]  Pillar Denton Limited & Others v Jervis & Others  [2014] EWCA Civ 180

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This blog is intended only as a synopsis of certain recent developments. If any matter referred to in this blog is sought to be relied upon, further advice should be obtained.