Himmelstein, McConnell, Gribben, Donoghue & Joseph - Manhattan Tenant Rights and Representation Attorney
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August 2013 Archives

Non-Payment Dismissed Where Landlord Refused Tendered Rent

New York Housing Court Judge Sabrina B. Kraus recently dismissed a landlords non-payment proceeding on the grounds that the landlord had repeatedly refused rent which the tenant tried to pay. The defense is known as "tender and refusal." Windermere vs. Mulla, NYLJ, 8/7/13. The tenant had been subject to repeated court proceedings by the landlord which had been either settled or discontinued. In one case the landlord failed to file any opposition papers and in the non-payment proceeding the landlord failed to refute the tenants claim that it had refused rent. Landlords often try to wear down tenants with repeated meritless proceedings.

Landlord/Tenant Snapshot: No Access Claims

Landlords commonly request access from tenants for repairs both parties agree must be done. Work usually is completed with cooperation and communication on both sides. But sometimes, claims of "no access" are created by landlords and boards to pressure a tenant or shareholder to do something unrelated to a bona fide repair. For example, tenants have been asked to let an "inspector" in who turns out to be an appraiser for a bank, an adjustor for an insurance claim, or even a prospective buyer. Sometimes a landlord needs access to a tenant's apartment for work in other areas of the building but won't tell the tenant the real reason (knowing the tenant might not be obligated to comply), so he fabricates a reason. Most conflicts arise when landlords send workers without prior notice, workers do not show up, do a bad job, or are unlicensed. Tenants may rightly view such requests as "harassment" and disregard them entirely. Disregarding a request for access can be dangerous, however, no matter how suspect the request might be.