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Eviction Limited When Landlord Fails To Register

Posted by Mark Smith on September 14, 1999 at 23:26:50:

The New York Law Journal's September 15th online edition reports the case of BROCATO v. GUISTO, where Staten Island Civil Court Judge Straniere awarded a money judgment -- not a possessory judgment, which allows eviction if it isn't paid -- in a case where a landlord who resided outside New York City did not register the house under 27-2097 of the city's Administrative Code. Once the city issued the registration, the tenant was subject to a possessory judgment for the rent accruing after the registration was issued.

This case did not involve a multiple dwelling, where registration requirements are more extensive, and where the Multiple Dwelling Registation (MDR) number must be included in the petition. Multiple Dwelling Law 325 precludes collection of rent when there is no valid MDR, although the Appellate Term, First Department (Manhattan and the Bronx) has permitted landlords to collect retroactive rents once the MDR is issued.

However, New York City tenants in one-family and two-family houses might be able to avoid a possessory judgment if their landlord has failed to register the building in accordance with 27-2097 of the city's Administrative Code.

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