• Current through October 23, 2012

(a) If a lessor discovers the lessee to be insolvent, the lessor may refuse to deliver the goods.

(b) After a default by the lessee under the lease contract of the type described in § 28:2A-523(a) or § 28:2A-523(c)(1) or, if agreed, after other default by the lessee, the lessor has the right to take possession of the goods. If the lease contract so provides, the lessor may require the lessee to assemble the goods and make them available to the lessor at a place to be designated by the lessor which is reasonably convenient to both parties. Without removal, the lessor may render unusable any goods employed in trade or business, and may dispose of goods on the lessee's premises (§ 28:2A-527).

(c) The lessor may proceed under subsection (b) of this section without judicial process if it can be done without breach of the peace or the lessor may proceed by action.

(July 22, 1992, D.C. Law 9-128, § 2(b), 39 DCR 3830; Apr. 18, 1996, D.C. Law 11-110, § 26, 43 DCR 530.)



Uniform Statutory Source

Sections 2-702(1) and 9-503.


Substantially revised.


1. Subsection (1), a revised version of the provisions of Section 2-702(1), allows the lessor to refuse to deliver goods if the lessee is insolvent. Note that the provisions of Section 2-702(2), granting the unpaid seller certain rights of reclamation, were not incorporated in this section. Subsection (2) made this unnecessary.

2. Subsection (2), a revised version of the provisions of Section 9-503, allows the lessor, on a Section 2A-523(1) or 2A-523(3)(a) default by the lessee, the right to take possession of or reclaim the goods. Also, the lessor can contract for the right to take possession of the goods for other defaults by the lessee. Therefore, since the lessee's insolvency is an event of default in a standard lease agreement, subsection (2) is the functional equivalent of Section 2-702(2). Further, subsection (2) sanctions the classic crate and delivery clause obligating the lessee to assemble the goods and to make them available to the lessor. Finally, the lessor may leave the goods in place, render them unusable (if they are goods employed in trade or business), and dispose of them on the lessee's premises.

3. Subsection (3), a revised version of the provisions of Section 9-503, allows the lessor to proceed under subsection (2) without judicial process, absent breach of the peace, or by action. Sections 2A-501(3), 2A-103(4) and 1- 201(1). In the appropriate case action includes injunctive relief. Clark Equip. Co. v. Armstrong Equip. Co., 431 F.2d 54 (5th Cir.1970), cert. denied, 402 U.S. 909 (1971). This Section, as well as a number of other Sections in this Part, are included in the Article to codify the lessor's common law right to protect the lessor's reversionary interest in the goods. Section 2A-103(1)(q). These Sections are intended to supplement and not displace principles of law and equity with respect to the protection of such interest. Sections 2A-103(4) and 1-103. Such principles apply in many instances, e.g., loss or damage to goods if risk of loss passes to the lessee, failure of the lessee to return goods to the lessor in the condition stipulated in the lease, and refusal of the lessee to return goods to the lessor after termination or cancellation of the lease. See also Section 2A-532.

Cross References

Sections 1-106(2), 2-702(1), 2-702(2), 2A-103(4), 2A-501(3), 2A-532 and 9-503.

Definitional Cross References

"Action". Section 1-201(1).

"Delivery". Section 1-201(14).

"Discover". Section 1-201(25).

"Goods". Section 2A-103(1)(h).

"Insolvent". Section 1-201(23).

"Lease contract". Section 2A-103(1)(l).

"Lessee". Section 2A-103(1)(n).

"Lessor". Section 2A-103(1)(p).

"Party". Section 1-201(29).

"Rights". Section 1-201(36).

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 28:2A-525.

Legislative History of Laws

For legislative history of D.C. Law 9-128, see Historical and Statutory Notes following § 28:2A-101.

Law 11-110, the "Technical Amendments Act of 1996," was introduced in Council and assigned Bill No. 11-485, which was referred to the Committee of the Whole. The Bill was adopted on first and second readings on December 5, 1995, and January 4, 1996, respectively. Signed by the Mayor on January 26, 1996, it was assigned Act No. 11-199 and transmitted to both Houses of Congress for its review. D.C. Law 11-110 became effective on April 18, 1996.