RENT RESTRICTION ACT

Arrangement of Sections

1. Short title.

2. Operation and application of Act.

3. Restriction on increase of rent.

4. Authorised rent.

5. Standard rent.

6. Permitted increases.

7. Special provisions for premises let in separate parts.

8. Prohibition of excessive advance, premium or other additional payment.

9. Restriction as to subletting of premises.

10. Use of residential premises for other purposes.

11. Provision of amenities, repairs.

12. Rent may be paid to the authorised person instead of the landlord.

12A. Restriction of right to institute proceedings for ejectment from premises the standard rent of which for a month does not exceed one hundred rupees.

13. Restriction of right to institute proceedings for ejectment.

14. Continuance of original contract of tenancy.

15. Recovery of payments in excess of authorised rent.

16. Statement as to standard rent, receipt.

16A. Power of Board to determine authorised rent.

16B. Certificate of tenancy.

17. Information to be furnished to Board.

18. Continuance of tenancy upon death of tenant.

19. Constitution of Rent Control Board.

20. Proceedings before the Board.

21. Board of Review.

22. Financial provisions.

23. Offences and penalties.

24. Regulations.

25. Enforcement of Act by authorised officers.

26. Owner deemed to be landlord in certain cases.

27. Interpretation.

28. Savings.

SCHEDULE

20 of 1948,

6 of 1953,

10 of 1961,

2 of 1964,

12 of 1966.

AN ACT to amend and consolidate the law relating to Rent Restriction.

[Date of Commencement: 1st January, 1949]

1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the Rent Restriction Act.

2. Operation and application of Act.

(1) This Act shall be in operation—

(a) in every area in which the Rent Restriction Ordinance, No. 60 of 1942, was, by virtue of any Proclamation under section 2 of that Ordinance, in force immediately prior to the 1st day of January, 1949; and

(b) in every other area for the time being declared by the Minister, by Notification published in the Gazette, to be an area in which this Act shall be in operation.

(2) The Minister shall, in every Notification under subsection (1), appoint the date on which the Notification shall take effect.

(3) The Minister may, by Order published in the Gazette, declare that this Act shall, with effect from such date as may be specified therein, cease to be in operation in any area, or in any part of any area, in which the Act has been in operation.

(4) So long as this Act is in operation in any area, the provisions of this Act shall apply to all premises in that area, not being excepted premises; and the expression "premises to which this Act applies” shall be construed accordingly.

(5) The regulations in the Schedule shall have effect for the purpose of determining the premises which shall be excepted premises for the purposes of this Act, and may be amended from time to time by regulation made under section 24.

(6) In this Act, the expression "appointed date” in relation to any premises situated in any area mentioned in subsection (1) (a) of this section, means the 1st day of January, 1949, and, in relation to any premises situated in any other area, means the date specified in the Notification under this section by virtue of which this Act is in operation in that area.

3. Restriction on increase of rent.

(1) It shall not be lawful for the landlord of any premises to which this Act applies—

(a) to demand, receive or recover as the rent of such premises, in respect of any period commencing on or after the appointed date, any amount in excess of the authorised rent of such premises as defined for the purposes of this Act in section 4; or

(b) to increase the rent of such premises in respect of any such period to an amount in excess of such authorised rent.

(2) It shall not be lawful for the tenant of any premises to which this Act applies to pay or offer to pay, as the rent of such premises, any amount in excess of the authorised rent of such premises as defined for the purposes of this Act in section 4.

(3) Any transfer to a tenant of any burden or liability previously borne by the landlord shall, for the purposes of this Act, be treated as an alteration of rent, and where, as the result of such transfer, the terms on which any premises are held are on the whole less favourable to the tenant than the previous terms, the rent shall be deemed to be increased, whether or not the sum periodically payable by way of rent is increased; and any increase of rent in respect of any transfer to a landlord of any burden or liability previously borne by the tenant where, as the result of such transfer, the terms on which any premises are held are on the whole not less favourable to the tenant than the previous terms, shall be deemed not to be an increase of rent for the purposes of this Act:

Provided that, for the purposes of this section, the rent shall not be deemed to be increased where the liability for rates is transferred from the landlord to the tenant, if a corresponding reduction is made in the rent.

4. Authorised rent.

For the purposes of this Act, the authorised rent of any premises shall be the standard rent of the premises determined under section 5, or where any increase of rent is permitted by section 6 in the case of such premises, the aggregate of the standard rent and every such permitted increase.

5. Standard rent.

(1) In the case of any premises the annual value of which was or is assessed for the purposes, of any rates levied by any local authority under any written law, the standard rent per annum of the premises means—

(a) the amount of the annual value of such premises as specified in the assessment in force under such written law during the month of November, 1941, or if the assessment of the annual value of such premises is made for the first time after that month, the amount of such annual value as specified in such first assessment; or

(b) if the rates so levied are, under the terms of the tenancy, payable by the landlord, the aggregate of the amount determined under paragraph (a) and of the amount payable per annum by way of such rates in respect of such premises for the year 1941, or, as the case may be, for the year in which such first assessment is made,

and the standard rent of the premises per month or per quarter or per half-year shall be determined in proportion:

Provided, however, that in the case of any such premises let at a progressive rent payable under the terms of a lease executed prior to the 1st day of November, 1941, the standard rent of the premises in respect of any period shall be the rent payable in respect of that period under the terms of the lease;

Provided, further, that in the case of any such premises which are first assessed or first separately assessed after the appointed date, the board may, on the application of the tenant, fix as the standard rent of the premises such amount as may in the opinion of the board be fair and reasonable.

(2) In the case of any premises to which the provisions of subsection (1) do not apply, the standard rent of the premises means—

(a) the rent at which the premises were let on the 1st day of November, 1941; or

(b) where the premises were not let on that day, but had been let previously, the rent at which the premises were last let before that day, or such other rent as may be fixed by the board on the application either of the landlord or of the tenant; or

(c) where the premises, not having been previously let, are let on or after that day, such rent as may be fixed by agreement between the landlord and the tenant, or whether or not there has been any such agreement, by the board on the application either of the landlord or of the tenant for the time being:

Provided that in the case of any premises let at a progressive rent payable under the terms of a lease executed prior to the 1st day of November, 1941, the standard rent of the premises in respect of any period shall be the rent payable in respect of that period under the terms of the lease;

Provided, further, that where any premises, which were let fully furnished at the date by reference to which the standard rent of the premises is determined for the purposes of this Act, are let unfurnished or not fully furnished at any time after the appointed date, the board may, on the application of the tenant, reduce the amount of the standard rent to such amount as the board may consider reasonable, having regard to all the circumstances of the case.

16. Permitted increases.

(1) Any increase of the rent of any premises in accordance with the provisions of any of the following paragraphs shall be a permitted increase for the purposes of this Act—

(a) The standard rent of any premises may be increased by an amount not exceeding ten per centum of such rent:

[S 6(1)(a) am by s 2 of Act 10 of 1961.]

Provided that where the Mayor or the Chairman of the local authority within the administrative limits of which any premises are situated has by notice in writing directed the landlord of such premises to carry out such repairs, or to make such redecoration, as are or is specified in the notice, such landlord shall not be entitled to charge the extra ten per centum of such rent until he has obtained a certificate in writing from such Mayor or Chairman that he has carried out such repairs or made such redecoration to such premises.

[S 6(1)(a) proviso ins by s 2 of Act 10 of 1961.]

(b) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection , where the landlord of any premises has, since the date by reference to which the standard rent of the premises is determined for the purposes of this Act, incurred, or hereafter incurs, expenditure on the improvement or structural alteration of the premises (not including expenditure on decoration or repairs), the standard rent per annum, may be increased by an amount calculated at a rate not exceeding six per centum of the amount so expended:

[S 6(1)(b) am by s 2 of Act 10 of 1961.]

Provided, however, that the board may, on the application of the tenant of such premises, direct that the standard rent shall not be increased as herein before provided, or reduce the amount by which the standard rent may be so increased, on any of the following grounds, that is to say—

(i) that such expenditure was excessive having regard to the nature and extent of the improvements or alterations effected or that the rental value of the premises has not been enhanced by such improvements or alterations; or

(ii) that, in the case of expenditure incurred after the appointed date, it was incurred without the prior consent of the tenant for the time being, or without the prior approval of the board granted on the board being satisfied that the consent of the tenant was unreasonably withheld.

(ba) The provisions of paragraph (b) of this subsection shall not apply to any premises on or after such date as shall be specified by the Minister by Order published in the Gazette.

[S 6(1)(ba) ins by s 2 of Act 10 of 1961.]

(bb) The provisions of paragraph (ba) of this subsection shall not affect any increase of the standard rent of any premises made before the date referred to in that paragraph by virtue of the provisions of paragraph (b) of this subsection.

[S 6(1)(bb) ins by s 2 of Act 10 of 1961.]

(bc) Where, with the prior consent of the tenant or with the prior approval of the board granted on the board being satisfied that the consent of the tenant was unreasonably withheld, the landlord of any premises incurs, on or after the date specified by the Minister by Order made under paragraph (ba) of this subsection, expenditure on the improvement or structural alteration of the premises (not including expenditure on decoration or repairs), the standard rent per annum may be increased by an amount calculated at a rate not exceeding six per centum of the amount so expended:

Provided, however, that the board may, on the application of the tenant of such premises, direct that the standard rent shall not be increased as herein before provided, or reduce the amount by which the standard rent may be so increased, on the ground that such expenditure was excessive having regard to the nature and extent of the improvements or alterations effected or that the rental value of such premises has not been enhanced by such improvements or alterations.

[S 6(1)(bc) ins by s 2 of Act 10 of 1961.]

(c) Where the rates levied under any written law in respect of any premises are, under the terms of the tenancy, payable by the landlord, and the actual amount for the time being payable per annum by way of such rates is in excess of the amount so paid for the year which included the date by reference to which the standard rent of the premises is determined for the purposes of this Act, the standard rent per annum may be increased by an amount not exceeding the amount of such excess.

(d) Where repairs have been or are at any time executed to any premises at the written request of the tenant, and the amount of the expenditure incurred on such repairs exceeds one-twelfth of the standard rent per annum of the premises, the standard rent per annum may be increased, in respect of the period of one year commencing on the first day of the month succeeding that in which the repairs were or are completed, by an amount equal to one-half of such excess:

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