Shopping center sues tenant for back rent

By Kelly Holleran | May 13, 2009

State Street Shopping Center has filed suit against one of the stores in its center, alleging the store has failed to pay lease payments since February.

State Street says it entered into a lease agreement with Large Apparel of Illinois, doing business as Ashley Stewart in East St. Louis, on July 21, 1999.

According to the terms of the agreement, Ashley Stewart would receive 4,000 square feet of space.

In return, the store was supposed to pay a monthly rent of $3,333.33 throughout the first five years of the agreement, $3,833.33 throughout the second five years of the lease and $4,333.33 throughout the third five years. The lease was supposed to run through April 30, 2010, according to the complaint filed May 7 in St. Clair County Circuit Court.

In addition to the lease payments, Ashley Stewart was responsible for operating costs, taxes and insurance premiums, the suit states.

However, Ashley Stewart has failed to pay rent and other charges it owes State Street, the complaint says.

After the store's first failure to make a payment, State Street sent a notice of default by regular mail to Ashley Stewart on March 27.

On April 23, State Street claims it sent Ashley Stewart a five-day notice via certified mail.

Still, Ashley Stewart has refused to make any payments demanded of it, according to the complaint.

"As of April 30, 2009, Tenant owes Landlord $10,960.61, consisting of $7,166.66 for rent, $774.72 for taxes, $1,037.14 for area maintenance, $210.14 for insurance, $75.00 for service charges, $255.24 for interest for the months of February through April, 2009; and $1,441.71 for 2008 reconciliation charges," the suit states. "Additionally, Tenant owes Landlord the accelerated balance of the remainder of the Lease through April 30, 2010 totaling $55,131.96."

In addition to the balance due, State Street is seeking possession of the premises, attorneys' fees, court costs and other relief the court deems just.

It is represented by Llynn K. White and Ryan J. Mason of Polsinelli Shughart in St. Louis.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-233.

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