The conventional wisdom at the time suggested that the Retail Leases Act was introduced to correct the perceived imbalance of power between large shopping centre owners and small tenants.

However, because of the definitions used in the Act its coverage is perhaps broader than anticipated and  can extend to catering agreements in clubs. This has been reinforced by a number of recent decisions including a New South Wales Court of Appeal judgement The Polish Club Limited v Gnych 2014 [NSW] CA 321 .

Clubs need to be fully aware of the possible consequences of giving a caterer access to the premises and obtain legal advice before entering into any agreement to do with catering in their club.

It is also vital that clubs have a written agreement in place before giving any caterer access to the premises of the club.

For more information contact Bruce Gotterson on b.gotterson@pigott.com.au