Flushing, NY asked in Landlord - Tenant for New York

Q: If Succession Rights are not promptly asserted, is it now possible to assert them to answer eviction petition?

A 64 years old woman worked as a resident caretaker for a special needs individual since 2012. The tenant parent of the disabled individual died in 2017, the resident caretaker continued caring for the special needs person until 2019 when she was transferred to a facility for care. The caretaker remained in the apartment; the landlord never approached her for rent but in served a Notice to Terminate 9/13/2022 and a Holdover Petition on, 1/9/2023. The latter Petition states in part, 1) The Term premises were occupied by respondent expired 10/31/2022, 2) The premises are not subject to rent control or the Rent Stabilization Law of 1974 by reason of the fact that the premises were leased for commercial purposes, and (There are three other apartments in the building with tenants), 3) the premises are not a multiple dwelling,

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1 Lawyer Answer
Steven Warren Smollens
Steven Warren Smollens
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • New York, NY
  • Licensed in New York

A: Dear Friend of a former Home Health Care Provider:

"Succession Rights" is an umbrella expression that covers all the potential relationships of a Rent Stabilized tenant with other persons sharing the apartment with the Tenant as a Primary Residence and who may be the Tenant's spouse, children, immediate family members who moved into the apartment with the Tenant, family members who were born into the family after the Tenant moved into the apartment, family members who moved into the apartment and shared the living expenses with the Tenant for at least a two-year period before the Tenant died or moved out and then so-called non-traditional family members [https://hcr.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2020/11/fact-sheet-30-11-2019.pdf]

This employment must have been very important to your friend. I also know of families with parents and special needs adult children. The parents' greatest fear is what will happen to their child if I die first.

But Succession Rights exist only in certain types of privately owned housing and in some form in State and City supervised and government-regulated housing.

You wrote: The building is not a multiple dwelling, and the apartment is not Rent Stabilized.

The building cannot have three other apartments with tenants and also not be a multiple dwelling. A multiple dwelling IS A building containing three or more residential housing accommodations.

But a building with less than six apartments hardly ever is Rent Stabilized.

You need to check this out for your friend. Look up the information about the building at NYC gov hpd. The menu bar at the top of the page with building information will contain the multiple dwelling registration number as well as the building identification number, the height of the building in stories and the number of Class A and Class B apartments in the building.

If you see 6 there, you may a Rent Stabilized building.

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