Sublease – Legal rules

Sublease - Legal rules

The sublease of a dwelling is in principle prohibited by Article 8 of the Law of 6 July 1989 on the accommodation of principal residence use leases, unless the owner agrees. Update on the conditions applicable to sublet the housing.


Using the sublease allows a tenant to put all or part of rented accommodation available to a subtenant, on payment of a financial consideration usually. This practice has the advantage of financing the rent payable by the tenant when it is absent where more lives only in its housing.

With no return, when the tenant free home near for example, it is not a sublet. The latter must also be distinguished from colocation, where each tenant a contract with the landlord.

Legally, the person who sublets the housing remains tenant of the landlord during the term of the sublease.

In practice, a tenant usually use the sublease when occasionally absent from the slot, during the summer holidays for example.


For the sublease to be legal, it must respect some rules.

The owner must therefore be informed by the tenant or by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt or by bailiff, the conditions in which the property is subleased, with particular mention of the rent and the duration of the sublease . To send a letter, the tenant can help our sublease demand model.


After receiving the request, the landlord must agree in writing on the principle of the sublease and the rental price (which shall not exceed the price of the rent paid by the main tenant).

Contract signature

If these two conditions are met, the sublease may result in the signing of a sub-lease agreement between the tenant and the subtenant, without the owner is required to participate since it was duly informed.


Since the Alur law, the tenant must provide two documents to the sub-tenant written permission of the lessor and a photocopy of the lease in progress.

Refusal of the landlord

The lessor may refuse freely sublease proposal. It does not have to provide reasons for his choice.


In practice, many tenants sublet their homes without notifying the owner. This practice is not without risk: if the owner refused sublease, or when no application for authorization made to it, the tenant who sublets including illegally exposes itself to a termination of the lease by the owner.

Expulsion and jurisprudence

In practice, the legal requirements are not always met. For subletting irregularly concluded, the question arises whether the owner can act directly against the order to evict the subtenant.

Judges have recently reiterated that even if the sublease was not done regularly, it does not allow the owner to evict the subtenant.

Indeed, the owner is a third party to lease between the tenant sublessee, so it is not party to the sublease contract. Thus, it can not act directly under a contract he has signed, according to the principle of Article 1199 of the Civil Code.

A sub-tenant can not be expelled by an action brought directly by the owner against him. But the owner always has the ability to act against his tenant.
Source: Judgment of the Labor Chamber of the Supreme Court of 1 February 2012. No appeal: 10-22863, 10-23818 and 11-10027.
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