Hamburger Evron & Co.

  • 02.11.2015, ILA ordered to return approximately 160 dunams in Lod, Calcalist

The District Court ruled that the land was leased to Yachin Hakal and a private individual

The Central District Court ordered the Israel Land Authority (ILA) to restore an area of 160 dunam (160,000 sqm) in Lod, after Judge Hadas Ovadia accepted the claim filed by the Yachin Hakal Company and a woman named Merilee Isaacs, whose father had leased the land and left it to her after his death.

The plaintiffs claimed through attorneys Menachem Abramovich and Eleanor Stark of law firm Hamburger Evron & Co. (Yachin Hakal) and attorney Tal Yakar (Isaacs) that the ILA dispossessed them of their rights in the land in Lod of an area of about 164 dunam (164,000 sqm), which had been leased as long ago as the 1950s. They claimed that the ILA had leased the land to a third party in 2006, without the lessees knowing about it, and in a manner that contradicts their rights in the land, and notice of it was given to them only about a year after another entity began to work the land. The ILA, however, claimed in their defense that the plaintiffs' lease contracts are not valid both because they were not renewed, and because they had breached them as they had neglected the land which is the subject of the claim.

The court rejected the arguments of the ILA, ruling that the ILA erred when it thought that Yachin Hakal and Isaacs had not extended the lease contracts by an additional 49 years. The plaintiffs' rights were in force when the ILA leased the land, such that leasing it to a third part was definitely in contradiction of those rights. Furthermore, the judge ruled that even if there had been any substance to the claims of the ILA of lease contract violations by the plaintiffs, there was no justification for the ILA using the extreme step of contract termination, especially since Yachin Hakal had worked the land for decades.

“The applicability of the law is conditional on the tenant continuing at all times to manage exactly the same business conducted in those premises by the deceased,” according to the judgment. “The social objective of the law is to not cut off the source of livelihood of the heir following the death of the tenant, yet, on the other hand, once the heir has found himself sources of income in other occupations, there is no reason for the law to spread its protection over him.

Rubinstein Buildings and Omninet Partnership were represented by attorneys Ori Primo and Ram Museri of law firm Hamburger Evron & Co.