STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
PETITIONER EF 110197-R
ORDER AND OPINION REMANDING PROCEEDING TO THE RENT ADMINISTRATOR
On August 2, 1990, the above-named petitioner-tenant filed a
Petition For Administrative Review against an order issued by a
Rent Administrator concerning housing accommodations known as
Apartment F-8 at 89-21 153rd Street, Jamaica, New York, wherein
the Rent Administrator terminated the proceeding because the
tenant had withdrawn the complaint.
The issue in this appeal is whether the District Rent Administra
tor's order was warranted.
This proceeding was originally commenced by the filing on June
10, 1990 of a rent overcharge complaint by the tenant.
On June 29, 1990 the owner submitted an answer to the complaint
which contained only the declaration in English that the tenant
hereby withdraws the complaint against the landlord. The ten-
ant's signature appeared on the bottom of this statement.
On July 6, 1990, the Rent Administrator issued the order here
under review whereby it was determined to terminate the pro-
ceeding because the tenant had withdrawn the complaint.
In her petition, the tenant protests this action, claiming that
she does not read or speak English and that the landlord never
explained to her what she was signing.
The Commissioner is of the considered opinion that this petition
be granted and that the proceeding be remanded to the Rent Admin
istrator for processing.
Pursuant to Section 2520.13 of the current Rent Stabilization
Code, any waiver of benefits under the Code is void unless based
upon a negotiated settlement between the parties and with the
approval of the DHCR or by a court of competent jurisdiction
where the tenant is represented by counsel.
In the instant case, the tenant, who asserts her inability to
read or speak English, was not respresented by counsel when she
signed a withdrawel statement that was written in English.
Furthermore, she at no time ever notified the Rent Administrator
that she wished to withdraw her complaint. Since the withdrawel
fails to meet the standards enunciated in the Code, it is void.
The Commissioner hereby remands the proceeding to the Rent Admin
istrator for a determination of the apartment's legal regulated
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and
Code, it is
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted
to the extent of remanding this proceeding to the District Rent
Administrator for further processing in accordance with this
Order and Opinion.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA