Corporate Lease Didn't Identify Individual to Occupy Apartment
LVT Number: 15860
Facts: Landlord sued tenant to recover the fair market value of use and occupancy during the 10-month period after tenant's last rent-stabilized renewal lease expired. Landlord claimed that the apartment was worth $4,600 per month. Tenant claimed that landlord could collect only the rent-stabilized rent of $1,900. Landlord claimed that tenant wasn't entitled to a rent-stabilized renewal lease for the period in question because the apartment was rented to a corporation and the lease didn't identify an individual to occupy the apartment. The apartment was rented originally to individual tenant in 1974. After the first three years, the lease was always renewed in the name of tenant's corporation, apparently at tenant's request. Tenant often signed renewal leases by his individual name, but the renewals were always made out to the corporation and never stated that the intent was for individual to live in the apartment. Court: Landlord wins. Tenant couldn't claim waiver simply because the same individual signed the renewal leases. A corporation can't be a primary resident. For the corporation's occupant to be considered a primary resident entitled to rent stabilization, the lease must specifically name that individual. Landlord was entitled to the difference between the stabilized rent paid and the fair market rent for the 10 months in dispute.
501 E. 87th St. Realty Co. LLC v. Ole Pa Enterprises Inc.: NYLJ, 5/22/02, p. 19, col. 2 (Sup. Ct. NY; Figueroa, J)