Posted by kristin on July 20, 2000 at 14:31:58:
In Reply to: Re: You seem to be in a pretty good position... posted by louis on July 20, 2000 at 13:47:19:
we do have a lawyer. he is very good, but he doesn't ever forecast things, as they might not happen. he thinks we are certainly in the right and that it is up to dhcr to act accordingly. i can say that we've done everything we can. the building is over 100 yrs old and all original wood. we had an architect write up a report about the disrepair of the building after the landlord claimed 'substantial rehab' due to a fire that happened 'between '85 and '87 which they claimed destroyed the building. we have proof from the fire dept. and the architect that that never happened. hopefully, this will all work in our favor. i have the back rent in a regular savings account. it would kill me to give it to them, though, after all of this.
thanks for your help.
: Your case is a lot different than mine, and I am not qualified to deal with most of the issues you raise.
: I generally do not think that lawyers are necessary for the DHCR. But yours is a situation where having a lawyer may actually help. In my case, it was for reduction of services. If we won, we got money if we lost, we didn't--no big loss. But you are in court and facing eviction, at least in theory.
: Assuming you dont have a lawyer-- be sure to respond to anything the landlord says in response to your petition. Keep it factual and unemotional. Also try to simplify the issues as much as possible as these DHCR people are cheeseheads.
: If he or his lawyer just provide letters but no evidence or affidavits, be sure to point that out. Produce evidence and affidavits of your own.
: If they do not respond to your PAR, ask that it be granted by default.
: One of my fellow tenants told me that following up by telephone is sometimes useful. I have never done so, however.
: If you lose, you may have grounds to appeal if the DHCR was totally off-the-wall, as they sometimes are. Be sure you provide the DHCR with all relevent information so that the record is complete. (I hope I am not telling you stuff you already know, by the way!)
: If I understand your case correctly, you may not owe any rent at all for the time lived there. If that is the case, a great deal of money is at stake. If you do obtain a lawyer, be sure to do so by obtaining a personal referral. We didn't, and our lawyer for the early part of the case was a jerk. Good luck.
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