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Re: late fees

Posted by Mark Smith on January 26, 2000 at 16:12:04:

In Reply to: late fees posted by Laura on January 26, 2000 at 14:15:05:

In New York, there are no laws providing for late fees if the rent is paid late. If the lease does not provide for late fees, the landlord is not entitled to late fees. Even if the lease provides for late fees, the courts have held that late fees cannot be excessive (anything over 5% is generally considered excessive). DHCR has also said that late fees are limited to 5% in the case of rent regulated apartments.

In your case, you have the legitimate reason for paying late because you were billed the incorrect monthly rent, even if your lease provided for reasonable late fees.

: Can a landlord charge $50 in late fees if there is no late fee clause in the lease?

: It seems from other messages that I've been reading that the consensus is "No, he cannot", but is anyone sure about this?

: The monthly "billing statement" we got for January had the incorrect rent printed on it (we just renewed our lease beginning in January and had negotiated a rent with the landlord, a 7% increase instead of a 12% increase - the statement showed a 12% increase) We wanted to have it corrected before paying, but our management company is very slow with paperwork. We gave up on waiting and on Jan. 10th, sent in the check for the correct amount. Since we moved in, we've been early paying every month and were only late this time because we wanted to clear up the mistake first.

: Can we safely ignore the late charge?

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