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Spiegel Law Defense Is Available to Tenant Only Where Social Services Withholds Rent

Posted by New York Tenant on July 18, 2001 at 08:06:32:

This case was previously mentioned in an article in the New York Law Journal about conflicting rulings between the Appellate Term, First Department (covering Manhattan and the Bronx) and the Appellate Term, Second Department (covering Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island).

Spiegel Law Defense Is Available to Tenant Only Where Social Services Withholds Rent

Respondent tenants moved to reargue a previous decision of the Supreme Court, Appellate Term, holding that the Spiegel Law defense was available to a tenant only in conjunction with a withholding of rent by the Department of Social Services. The court granted leave to reargue to the tenants, who contended that the ruling was made without allowing them to brief the issue. The court, however, adhered to its determination. It said that the statute was intended to authorize social services officials to withhold rent payments where dangerous conditions existed. It found no legislative intent to grant tenants an independent right to determine whether building violations justified withholding rent. The fact that the Welfare Department paid a public assistance tenant's entire rent at the time of the law's enactment supported the no legislative intent finding.

Notre Dame Leasing LLC v. Rosario, 2nd & 11th Districts, Supreme Court, Appellate Term, Judges Scholnick, Aronin and Patterson

You can read the entire decision if you register for a trial subscription to the Law Journal:

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