Judgment Reversed: COVID-19 Restrictions, Economic Challenges Alone Don’t Excuse Tenants’ Failure to Pay Rent | Law.com

Looking primarily to states like Connecticut for guidance, the Appellate Court of Maryland concluded that economic challenges stemming from COVID-19 executive orders themselves are not sufficient to establish the affirmative defenses of frustration of purpose and legal impossibility for failure to pay rent.

David and Carolyn Marquis leased an Annapolis, Maryland, property for a restaurant/pub known as the Chesapeake Brewing Co. The couple operated the business without substantial difficulties until the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic and when Gov. Larry Hogan issued an executive order in March 2020 limiting bars and restaurants to carryout orders.

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