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Simon Countersues Gap Over $107 Million in Lease Payments

  • Gap says coronavirus’ effects demand landlord give rent relief
  • Simon says chain using Covid-19 as pretext to renegotiate
A Gap Inc. Store Ahead Of Earnings Figures
Photographer: Scott McIntyre/Bloomberg
Updated on

Simon Property Group LP countersued The Gap Inc., alleging the retail chain is using the Covid-19 pandemic as a pretext to avoid more than $107 million so far in lease payments on its stores nationwide.

San Francisco-based Gap is “taking opportunistic advantage” of the coronavirus’ devastating effects on the U.S. economy to refuse to make lease payments even though some of its stores have reopened, Simon’s lawyers said Wednesday in a Delaware Chancery Court filing.

The filing in response to Gap’s lawsuit last month seeking rent relief and some lease calculations is the latest front in the battle between the largest U.S. shopping mall operator and one of its biggest tenants. Simon filed a separate lawsuit against Gap in Delaware Superior Court in June seeking $65.9 million in unpaid rent. Gap is engaged in similar litigation with Brookfield Properties, another large mall operator, and several other landlords.