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Re: eviction of sub-tenant

Posted by TenantNet on December 07, 1996 at 03:42:17:

In Reply to: eviction of sub-tenant posted by Annonymous on December 03, 1996 at 15:20:11:

: I have subletters in my rent stabilized apartment who are refusing to
: cooperate. They moved into the apartment while I was abroad, based on a
: friendly agreement with my previous sub-tenant who had to leave.
: On moving in, September of 1996, they canceled my telephone
: (by providing false information to the phone company) and put the phone into
: their name. They have also disposed of things (furniture) in the apartment.
: I considered this a breech of our (verbal, third party) agreement
: which states that the apartment was to be maintained as is. (All of my
: belongings are in it.) I therefore asked for a security deposit and
: formal, written agreement. They have refused--and stopped paying rent
: since I requested that it be paid to my account, rather than to the landlord.
: (The landlord accepted rent from them twice. But has since agreed not to
: and has taken Dec. rent from me.) I now want to evict them.
: (note: I did not at any point follow the legal proceedure to
: sublet.But my landlord is in support of my taking the apartment back.)

: Can somebody tell me if my sub-tenants have any legal claim to the apartment?
: And what are the best grounds on which to evict them?

As the prime tenant, you are responsible for the rent, and it appears you are
lucky that the landlord is not making a fuss about the alleged "illegality"
of the sublet, not having followed the procedures of Real Property Law
section 226-b.

In essence, you are in a landlord-tenant relationship with these people
although that may be questionable if the first subtenant allowed them in
without your permission. Your recourse is through court action, not any
self-help remedy. Although I can sympathize with your plight, there are often
two sides to these stories, and after all, we do side with tenants. You
need to look at the nature of the subletting agreement (if in writing).
You would need to bring a holdover action against these sublettors, and in
this kind of case I think you should retain or ate least consult with an attorney.
Make sure you don't charge more than the legal rent or you may be liable
for overcharges.

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