In its decision, the Postal Board first determined—consistent with existing law—that the USPS holdover “breached the duty implied in the lease to vacate the premises at its expiration.” Slip op. at 8. Second, the Postal Board determined that the remedy of eviction was not available to the lessor (an issue with which almost all courts agree). Third, the Postal Board determined that “rent in comparable leases” could be used to determine the “reasonable value” of the property for the holdover period. Id. at 10. Fourth, after considering the conflicting views of the parties and their experts, the Postal Board adopted lessor’s position that the “uncertain duration of the holdover requires application of a rental ‘premium.’” Id. at 11. This holding is significant, as it recognizes the indefinite duration of the holdover as a factor in determining damages necessary to make the lessor whole. Finally, in determining the precise length of the holdover period the Postal Board determined that “a holding-over government occupant owes a duty to notify the owner before it vacates, ending the holdover.” Since the USPS failed to provide notice until after it vacated the premises, the USPS was liable to pay reasonable, fair market value rent through the entire month during which it vacated the premises, even though it actually vacated the premises on the second day of the month.
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