SEAC Co v Ang Ah Bak

JurisdictionSingapore
CourtFederal Court (Singapore)
JudgeChua F A J
Judgment Date10 November 1996
Neutral Citation[1966] SGFC 19
Citation[1966] SGFC 19
Plaintiff CounselLim Chor Pee and TTB Koh (Chor Pee & Hin Hiong)
SubjectTenant subletting portion of premises- Tenant received rent in excess of 110% of rent paid by him -- Landlord terminating tenancy,Recovery of possession,Landlord and Tenant,Rent-controlled premises,Section 15(1)(g) Control of Rent Ordinance (Cap 242, 1955 Rev Ed),Whether tenant estopped from denying title of landlord by whom he was let into possession -Whether landlord entitled to possession if tenant stopped receiving excessive rents before termination of tenancy
Date10 November 1966
Defendant CounselSK Lee (SK Lee)
Publication Date19 September 2003
Docket NumberCivil Appeal No Y8 of 1966

This appeal arises from an action commenced by the plaintiff (the respondent) in the High Court against the defendants (the appellants) for recovery of possession of the ground and first floors of No 11 Phillip St, Singapore, of which the plaintiff claimed that she was the chief tenant.

The plaintiff`s case was that the defendants were her sub-tenants in respect of the ground and first floors of the premises and that the defendants had sublet a room on the ground floor and had collected rents in excess of the recoverable rent for that part or alternatively the rents received by the defendants for the part sublet exceeded one hundred and ten per centum of the recoverable rent paid by the defendants in contravention of para (g) of s 15 (1) of the Control of Rent Ordinance (Cap 242), (hereinafter referred to as the Ordinance).

The defendants denied that they were tenants of the plaintiff and alleged that the tenancy of the whole premises vested in Tan Sin Peng, a partner in their firm, by virtue of his being the sole surviving partner of Chop Chin Cheong to whom the tenancy of the whole premises was first granted by the landlord in 1942. They admitted the subletting of the room on the ground floor but denied that there was contravention of para (g) of s 15(1) of the Ordinance.

The evidence of the plaintiff was shortly as follows. She had been living at No 11 Phillip St continuously from the beginning of the Japanese occupation with her husband Tan Tian Kit and she now occupied the second floor of the house. Her husband, Tan Sin Peng and others were partners in Khye Giap & Co at No 11 Phillip St. This firm dissolved and in 1942 her husband commenced the business of Chop Chin Cheong at No 11 Phillip St and took the tenancy of the whole building. Her husband was the sole proprietor of the chop and the tenancy was in the name of the chop and the rent was $100 pm. Shortly after that Tan Sin Peng rented from her husband half of the ground floor of the premises at a rental of $50 pm and carried on business there under the style of Tan Sin Peng Shyoko. Her husband died on 2 August 1944 and the business of Chop Chin Cheong was wound up by the Chinese Bankers Trust Ltd, the administrators of her husband`s estate. After her husband`s death she had paid the rent of the premises. She approached the landlord of the house and requested him to change the rent receipts into her name. The landlord said that he only recognised Chop Chin Cheong and would accept rent only from her and nobody else and that it was unnecessary to issue receipts in her name. Ever since then the landlord had been accepting rent from her and issuing rent receipts to her in the name of the chop up to the present. When Chop Chin Cheong was wound up, she let the whole of the ground floor to Tan Sin Peng at his request at a rental of $100 pm. It was agreed that she was to pay all the municipal charges in respect of the whole premises. In 1945 after the liberation of Singapore, Tan Sin Peng requested her to let to him the first floor of the premises as well in consideration of his paying the municipal charges in respect of the whole premises. The municipal charges then ranged from $40 to $60 pm. She agreed and thereupon Tan Sin Peng became her tenant in respect of the ground and the first floors. In 1945 the landlor d increased the rent to $125 pm and she in turn increased Tan Sin Peng`s rent from $100 to $125 pm. In February 1954 the landlord increased the rent to $132.50 pm and she in turn increased Tan Sin Peng`s rent to $132.50 pm. The rent receipts issued to Tan Sin Peng were at first in the name of Tan Sin Peng & Co and when in December 1961 Tan Sin Peng changed the name of his firm to SEAC & Co the rent receipts were issued in that name. In May 1955 Tan Sin Peng rented out a small room on the ground floor of the premises to Hin Seng & Co at a rental of $190 pm including municipal charges. Later Hin Seng & Co made an application to the Rent...

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3 cases
  • Lim Kim Kee v Kin Aik Pte Ltd
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 20 July 1984
    ...the respondent. Che Esah v Che Limah [1966] 1 MLJ 36 (refd) Hardial Singh v Lim Lye Huat [1960] MLJ 240 (refd) SEAC Co v Ang Ah Bak [1965-1967] SLR (R) 462; [1965-1968] SLR 162 (folld) Control of Rent Act (Cap 266, 1970 Rev Ed)s 15 (1) (g) (consd) Landlord and Tenant–Recovery of Possession–......
  • Malayan Railway Administration v Station Hotel Company (A Firm)
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 27 August 1992
    ...Ltd [1965] 1 MLJ 91 (refd) Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd v Eastern Auto Co Ltd [1961] MLJ 300 (folld) SEAC Co v Ang Ah Bak [1965-1967] SLR (R) 462; [1965-1968] SLR 162 (folld) Syed Ahmed Al-Junied v Reshty [1968-1970] SLR (R) 402; [1969-1971] SLR 7 (folld) Teo Ee Hup v Syed Hussain Alkaf......
  • Ho Tong Cheong and Others v Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd
    • Singapore
    • Federal Court (Singapore)
    • 6 April 1967
    ...Brothers v Tong Nam Contractors [1959] MLJ 240 (refd) Sarah Cashin v Goh Kah Seng [1955] MLJ 52 (refd) SEAC Co Ltd v Ang Ah Bak [1965-1967] SLR (R) 462; [1965-1968] SLR 162 (folld) Zbytniewski v Broughton [1956] 2 QB 673, [1956] 3 All ER 348 (refd) Control of Rent Ordinance (Cap 242, 1955Re......

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