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legal action if any by tenant or landlord.

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legal action if any by tenant or landlord.

Postby suhindra » Tue Apr 21, 2020 11:30 am

queens, jamaica NYC, year build 1930, MY LANDLORD REFUSE TO GIVE RECEIPT AND DEMAND CASH , renting a 2 family basement, was getting receipt from 2012 up until this march 2020, paid april rent but no receipt, what is my legal action if any, what legal action can my landlord take if any, no lease, month to month tenancy,(i apologies if i am in the wrong section)can i be evicted if i insisted on my receipt.
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Re: legal action if any by tenant or landlord.

Postby TenantNet » Tue Apr 21, 2020 1:18 pm

A few things...

First, you say the apartment is a 2-family basement. Does that mean two families are in the building, or two families in the basement? If the building has 3 or more apartments, it has to be registered with HPD. Even if less than 3 units, and if the owner does not live on premises, it still has to be registered with HPD.

It's possible, but unlikely given the description you've given us, that the unit should be rent stabilized.

Second, is it a basement or cellar? Basements have over one-half of their height below grade. Basements can on occasion be lawfully rented, but cellars can not be rented for residential purposes ... ever. See https://www1.nyc.gov/site/hpd/services- ... ellar.page

A lot has to do with ventilation, odors from furnaces, egress and other issues that can be dangerous. These rules are for you own protection.

The city has an experimental program in Brooklyn to legalize some basements, but they have to be brought up-to-code.

As for receipts, the NYS Real Property Law section 235(e) says he has to give a receipt. It always had, but it was strengthened last year:

https://www.nystatemls.com/blog/industr ... anges.html

- RPL §235-e was amended to require the landlord or his agent to provide written rent receipts for payments made by cash or any instrument other than personal check.

- Lessor is required to maintain records of cash receipts for at least 3 years.

- Rent receipts must be issued immediately if rent is personally transmitted and within 15 days, if payment of rent is transmitted indirectly.

- RPL§235-e(b) requires landlords and their agents to provide a receipt when requested by tenant for rent paid by personal check. Said request remains in effect for the duration of the tenancy and requires the receipt to include: the date, amount, identity of the premises, and signature of the person receiving rent.

But before that, understand that checks and money orders are legitimate forms of payment. You do not have to pay in cash. If you attempt to pay by check or money order, and if the landlord refuses, that is called "tender and refusal" and is a defense against a non-payment in housing court.

In most cases where the LL is demanding cash, it's because he/she is avoiding reporting to the IRS. You can always ask them if they IRS knows, and then report them.

However, understand that if you don't have a lease, or when the lease ends, if you are not RS, the LL can evict you.

Right now, landlords cannot start eviction proceedings due to the Coronavirus. But eventually that will change.

I would do whatver you can to get a receipt or proof of payment. The LL might be wanting to claim you haven't paid rent.
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Re: legal action if any by tenant or landlord.

Postby suhindra » Tue Apr 21, 2020 2:08 pm

thank you so much , let me clarify a bit, its a 2 family private house, myself in the basement, landlord occupy first floor, and second floor also rented, and yes its a tax evasion for him because i offered check payment in the beginning and he refuse, i let him know if i will be paying cash i will have to get a recipe however i was getting one up until this april 2020, and he still refuses check or money order payment for tax evasion purposes, can i take him to housing court for refusal of check payment
/
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Re: legal action if any by tenant or landlord.

Postby TenantNet » Tue Apr 21, 2020 2:57 pm

So, if 2-family and LL lives on-premises, then it does not have to be registered with HPD. Also, would not be rent stab. I think you mean receipt, not recipe.

No, you cannot take him to court for not giving a receipt (housing court is limited in issues it can address). You can use this as a defense if he takes you to court (when the COVID-19 prohibition is lifted).

But remember, as a month-to-month tenant, the LL can seek your eviction at any time (when the prohibition is lifted). You do not have that many protections.
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Re: legal action if any by tenant or landlord.

Postby suhindra » Tue Apr 21, 2020 3:03 pm

thank you.
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