Twitter Sued for Failure to Pay Rent at San Francisco Headquarters

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Twitter's headquarters can be seen in San Francisco on November 18, 2022.

Twitter’s headquarters can be seen in San Francisco on November 18, 2022.

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Twitter has been sued for millions of dollars over allegations of unpaid rent at the company’s San Francisco headquarters, according to a lawsuit filed Friday, Jan. 20.

The lawsuit is the culmination of months of rumors that Twitter under new CEO Elon Musk failed to pay rent for its headquarters at 1355 Market St. Those rumors were originally reported by the New York Times. In the meantime, two other unrelated lawsuits have been filed against Twitter for default. Additional stories have emerged that Twitter is not paying for cleaning services at its headquarters and that certain rooms in its headquarters are equipped with beds, the latter of which have led to an ongoing investigation by San Francisco’s Planning Department and Department of Building Inspection .

Shorenstein, the real estate investment company that originally acquired the building at 1355 Market St. in 2011, claimed in the lawsuit that Twitter owes $3.162 million in unpaid rent due January 2023 — plus interest and back fees. The lawsuit alleged that Twitter also failed to pay rent in December 2022; Shorenstein was able to obtain the December rent amount from Twitter’s $3.6 million letter of credit, which functionally served as a surety. The real estate company then took about $265,000 of the remaining letter of credit to cover a portion of the January rent. That letter of credit balance has now been reduced to $1, according to the lawsuit.

Shorenstein said in the lawsuit that as a result of Musk’s buyout last October, Twitter’s letter of credit would soar well above $3.6 million — effectively by the amount of $10 million. But Shorenstein claimed that Twitter has refused to supplement the amount withdrawn from its letter of credit to cover rent owed, and has also refused to increase its letter of credit by $10 million.

Through a representative, Shorenstein declined to comment on the lawsuit. Twitter’s communications division was shut down after Musk became CEO.

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