Balcony Ruled Not Part of Loft

Loft tenant counted terrace/balcony to reach statutory minimum of 400 square feet. David Coventry rented unit 1109 of a loft building located at 475 Kent Avenue, Brooklyn. Coventry applied for coverage and protection under the Loft Law. The owner of 475 Kent Avenue opposed, arguing that unit 1109 measured less 400 square feet, the minimum size required to be covered by the Loft Law. Coventry responded that unit 1109 would meet the 400 square foot … <Read More>

Court Finds Commercial Tenants’ Guilty Plea Voided Lease

The owners of a midtown antique shop were convicted of illegally selling $1.5 million worth of elephant ivory, which allowed their landlords to evict them pursuant to New York Property Law. In 2015, an undercover officer entered the Metropolitan Fine Arts & Antiques shop and bought ivory for $2,000. The sale of ivory without a permit became illegal in 2014 in an effort to protect elephant population. The authorities found and seized 126 ivory articles, … <Read More>

Racial Impact Studies Not Required For Rezoning

Local residents and community activists brought an action to stop a rezoning that would encourage gentrification and racial disparity. Churches United for Fair Housing, along with local residents and other local groups, brought an action against the City in the Supreme Court of New York County to stop the construction of a housing development in the Broadway Triangle section of Brooklyn. Churches United is a local grassroots organization that seeks to preserve communities by advocating … <Read More>

Court Holds That Agency Rent Overcharge Calculation Violated Law

Landlord not responsible for more than four years of overcharged rent. On August 16, 2018, the Appellate Division for the First Department held that the landlord for 27 West 96th Street in Manhattan did not engage in a fraudulent scheme to evade the Rent Stabilization Law and therefore the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) had miscalculated the amount of overcharged rent that was due back to tenants.

UES Tenement Development To Keep Landmark Status Despite Owner’s Lawsuit

Building owners claimed landmark status caused financial hardship. Stahl York Avenue Co., LLC, tenement development owner of 429 East 64th Street and 430 East 65th Street in the Upper East Side, sued the City and the Landmark Preservation Commission in January 2016, asking the court to release the property landmark status in order to permit demolition and construct new high-rises for larger profits. Stahl York Avenue sought to demolish the two buildings, which are part … <Read More>

City Mandatory Rental Terms Violated State Law

Rental Assistance program sought to establish lease renewal and limit rent increases based on rent stabilization regulations. In 2015, prospective tenants Regina Alston and Sandra Vaughn-Cooke inquired about apartment vacancies at Spring Creek Towers. Starrett City, Inc. owns Spring Creek Towers, located in the East New York neighborhood in Brooklyn. Spring Creek Towers is an apartment complex with 5,881 apartments. Alston and Vaughn-Cooke both had Living in Communities (LINC) rental vouchers. Starrett City, Inc. … <Read More>