Himmelstein, McConnell, Gribben, Donoghue & Joseph - Manhattan Tenant Rights and Representation Attorney
Tell Us About Your Case

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close
Call Toll Free: 888-282-8431

Posts tagged "rent-stabilization"

One million NYC renters to see their rent increase

On April 25, the NYC Rent Guidelines Board voted to raise the rent on certain rent stabilized lofts, apartments and hotel units. If your lease will be renewed between October 1, 2017, and September 30, 2018, you will likely receive a rent increase.

HCR (DHCR) FOIL Procedures Updated

HCR (formerly known as DHCR) is the agency that has supervision over rent-stabilized and rent-controlled apartments. There are many proceedings that are handled by the HCR, including overcharge complaints, MCI applications, rent reduction applications, luxury deregulation petitions...

Demolition eviction: a new tactic for landlords to evict rent-stabilized tenants

If you occupy a rent-stabilized apartment, you understand the value of your property. Rents are high in New York, and your current rent may be the only affordable way for you to remain in your home and stay afloat financially.

Murphy Has Legs - Long-Term Residents Granted Succession

In December 2013, the New York State Court of Appeals ruled in Murphy v. DHCR, that a long-term Mitchell-Lama resident has succession rights even though his mother had not named him on one "income affidavit." Mr. Murphy was represented by HMGDJ partner David Hershey-Webb.  Three recent decisions, an Appellate Term, 2nd Department decision, a Housing Court (Kings County) decision and a DHCR Mitchell-Lama succession determination have cited Murphy in upholding succession claims.

No MCI Rent Increase for Owner Who Has 10 years to Repair Defective Windows but Doesn't

Rent stabilized tenants in a Upper West Side building won a great victory today when the DHCR again revoked a $39.16 per room MCI rent increases for new windows after inspecting the windows and finding that they are defective. The owner installed the new windows in 2004 but when they were originally found to be defective in certain apartments the DHCR permanently exempted those apartments from the increase in 2006.  The owner appealed arguing that the exemption should be temporary and that it should be given another chance to repair the windows, although tenants argued it had already had multiple chances. The owner lost its Article 78 appeal before Judge Marilyn Shafer.  The owner then appealed to the Appellate Division.  In 2010 a divided court ruled in Langham Mansions v. DHCR that the agency should have suspended rather than permanently denied the increase, despite evidence in the record that the owner had repeatedly tried to repair the windows and failed.  The matter was sent back to the DHCR and the owner then had four additional years to try to repair the windows. The owner failed to do so and when the DHCR reinspected in 2014 they were found to be defective, as the tenants had claimed they were in 2006.  The windows were found to be both difficult to open and had air seepage due to gaps between the bottom sash and frame.

Owner Use Abuse

Our firm recently won a huge victory in a long, bitter and hard fought case entitled Samra v. Messeca. The case was an example of our work in eviction prevention. This was what is known as an "owner use" proceeding-an eviction case brought against a rent stabilized tenant because the landlord claims that they want to have an immediate family member-in this case one of the landlord's daughters- occupy the unit. In order to prevail in such a case, the landlord only needs to establish that he or she has a good faith, honest intention to have the family member live in the unit. Landlords frequently use owner occupancy as a ruse to evict rent stabilized tenants. This case was a textbook example of bad faith. There had been a long history of animosity between the tenant and the landlords. After recovering another apartment under the guise of owner occupancy, the family member for whom the apartment was sought did not move in; instead the landlord destabilized it and quadrupled the rent. Moreover, there were other apartments available which the landlord could have moved his daughter into, and blatant harassment of the tenant. In order to maintain an owner use case, the building must be owned by individuals; in this case, although the deed was transferred to an individual, the building was still managed and operated through a corporation. Tellingly, the landlord had attempted to coerce the tenant into accepting de facto and illegal deregulation of her apartment years before this case began, by suggesting that if she failed to agree, the landlord would evict her in an owner occupancy case. The court, in a 19 page decision, dismissed the case, citing these many factors and held that the landlord did not have a good faith desire to have his daughter occupy the apartment; in effect the court found that the landlord was lying and that the case was a sham. The tenant in this case was represented by Janet Ray Kalson and Sam Himmelstein.

Owner Use Abuse

Our firm recently won a huge victory in a long, bitter and hard fought case entitled Samra v. Messeca. The case was an example of our work in eviction prevention. This was what is known as an "owner use" proceeding-an eviction case brought against a rent stabilized tenant because the landlord claims that they want to have an immediate family member-in this case one of the landlord's daughters- occupy the unit. In order to prevail in such a case, the landlord only needs to establish that he or she has a good faith, honest intention to have the family member live in the unit. Landlords frequently use owner occupancy as a ruse to evict rent stabilized tenants. This case was a textbook example of bad faith. There had been a long history of animosity between the tenant and the landlords. After recovering another apartment under the guise of owner occupancy, the family member for whom the apartment was sought did not move in; instead the landlord destabilized it and quadrupled the rent. Moreover, there were other apartments available which the landlord could have moved his daughter into, and blatant harassment of the tenant. In order to maintain an owner use case, the building must be owned by individuals; in this case, although the deed was transferred to an individual, the building was still managed and operated through a corporation. Tellingly, the landlord had attempted to coerce the tenant into accepting de facto and illegal deregulation of her apartment years before this case began, by suggesting that if she failed to agree, the landlord would evict her in an owner occupancy case. The court, in a 19 page decision, dismissed the case, citing these many factors and held that the landlord did not have a good faith desire to have his daughter occupy the apartment; in effect the court found that the landlord was lying and that the case was a sham. The tenant in this case was represented by Janet Ray Kalson and Sam Himmelstein.

A Mystery: Tenants in Buildings Receiving 421-G Located in the Financial District Show Little Interest in Securing Rent Stabilization Protections/Rights

On December 23, 2009, attorneys at the law firm of Himmelstein, McConnell, Gribben, Donoghue and Joseph secured a potentially major victory for tenants in New York City.

Rent Reduction for Terminating Electrical Inclusion without DHCR approval

In a decision dated December 2, 2013, 98 Riverside Drive v. DHCR and 98 Riverside Drive Tenants Association, Justice Cynthia S. Kern of the New York State Supreme Court dismissed the landlord's Article 78 petition against a rent reduction order issued by the DHCR which was based upon the landlord's unilateral discontinuance of electrical inclusion (electricity included in the rent). The tenants had always had their electricity included in their rent. The landlord converted the building from "master metering" to individual metering by installing individual meters in tenants' apartments. The Rent Stabilization Law and Rent Control Law require that a landlord first apply to the DHCR for permission before discontinuing electrical inclusion.