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Commercial Landlord's Right to Repossess After 15 Days of Unpaid Rent

Updated: Jun 12


While the Residential Tenancies Act (RTC) aims to protect residential tenants, the Commercial Tenancies Act (CTA) does not provide the same protections for commercial tenancies, philosophically considered a transaction among equals.

In this context, Section 18(1) of the Ontario Commercial Tenancies Act (CTA) allows the landlord to re-enter and take back possession of the premises if the rent remains unpaid for 15 days without court intervention.


Our client, a commercial tenant, was locked out by the landlord (the landlord changed the lock in the tenant’s absence) for non-payment of rent.

We advised our client:

(a) section 19 of the Commercial Tenancies Act required notice as a prerequisite reentry, and;

(b) such reentry is permitted only if rent remains unpaid for 15 days. In this case, the landlord “jumped the gun” by locking out the tenant after six days of unpaid rent. The landlord also did not provide the requisite notice.


With our advice, the tenant regained possession of the premises. The Landlord


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