Disclaimer: This work was produced by one of our expert legal writers, as a learning aid to help law students with their studies.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not reflect the views of LawTeacher.net. Any information contained in this case summary does not constitute legal advice and should be treated as educational content only.

Radaich v Smith [1959]

294 words (1 pages) Case Summary

17th Jun 2019 Case Summary Reference this In-house law team

Jurisdiction / Tag(s): Australian Law

Radaich v Smith [1959] HCA 45

Landlord and tenant; whether agreement amounted to a lease even though labelled a license


The parties entered in to an agreement which was executed as a deed. The agreement allowed Radaich to occupy a lock up shop for a period of five years, where she would conduct a business as a milk bar. The document was labelled on its face as a license agreement and at no point were the words lease, lessor or lessee used. Radaich applied for a fair rent to be determined and Smith maintained that as the agreement constituted a license and not a lease, there was no jurisdiction under which a fair rent could be determined.


If the agreement amounted to a lease, a magistrate of the Fair Rents Board would hold jurisdiction to determine a fair rent for the premises. Radaich argued she held a lease in substance even though the agreement was labelled a license, because it effectively amounted to a right to exclusive possession for a term. Smith argued the deed amounted to an agreement to create a license only. At no point did the deed refer to a lessor, a lessee or a lease and, as such, it could not amount to a lease and the magistrate, therefore, had no jurisdiction to determine a fair rent.


The agreement was found to be a lease and the magistrate had jurisdiction to determine a fair rent. Whether an agreement constituted a lease or a license depended on whether, if properly interpreted, the deed created in substance exclusive possession of the property for a term. Regard should be had to the substance and effect of the document itself, and not the label given to it by the parties.

Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:

Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.

Related Services

View all

Related Content

Jurisdictions / Tags

Content relating to: "Australian Law"

This selection of academic papers covers the legal system of Australia and contains, essays, dissertations and case summaries which may be of interest to Australian law students or those studying Australian laws from outside Australia.

Related Articles