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Forever 21’s Buyer Denied Virus Relief From Bankruptcy Court

April 21, 2020, 9:17 PM

The company that purchased retail apparel store Forever 21 can’t turn to the bankruptcy code for relief from paying landlords while stores are shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Judge Mary F. Walrath of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware said Tuesday that Forever 21’s rejection of certain leases isn’t effective unless the landlords are in possession of the leased premises. Rejecting the leases means the store’s buyer wouldn’t be responsible for honoring the lease agreements.

“I feel for the buyer’s and the landlords’ situation,” as the Covid-19 pandemic has caused “terrible disruption worldwide,” Walrath said ...