25 Percent Rent Abatement for Water Leaks
LVT Number: 18601
Cooperative tenant-shareholder sued landlord cooperative corporation for breach of the warranty of habitability, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and for property damage caused by landlord's failure to adequately repair recurring water leaks in tenant's apartment. After a jury trial, the court awarded tenant a 37 percent rent abatement for the period between October 1985 and March 1991, and a 100 percent rent abatement for the period between April 1991 and August 1995. The court also awarded tenant money for his emotional distress claim. Landlord appealed and won. The rent abatement awarded was excessive. The appeals court reduced it to 25 percent for all periods, finding that this sum more accurately reflected the difference between maintenance paid by tenant and the value of the apartment during the period of the breach. The court revoked the emotional distress damages. Tenant didn't show that landlord unreasonably endangered tenant's physical safety or caused him to fear for his safety.
Isaacs v. Jefferson Tenants Corp.: NYLJ, 12/13/05, p. 24, col. 3 (App. T. 1 Dept.; Suarez, PJ, Davis, Schoenfeld, JJ)