DHCR Must Recompute Tenant's MBR
LVT Number: 13061
Facts: Tenant moved into an apartment in a two-family house in 1946. In 1985, tenant complained of a rent overcharge. The DRA ruled for tenant, finding that she was rent-controlled and that her maximum rent as of 1970 was $110. Landlord appealed, and the DRA issued a new order, finding that the maximum rent was $375 as of July 1, 1984. Landlord and tenant both appealed and the case was again sent back to the DRA, who ruled that the maximum collectible rent was $835 as of June 1, 1997. Tenant appealed again and the DHCR ruled that the 1950 maximum rent was $60, that the 1983 maximum rent was $375 and that tenant's 1995 maximum rent was $500, based on lawful rent increases over the 1983 maximum rent. Tenant again appealed. Court: Tenant wins. Under applicable rent control regulations, the DHCR must set tenant's rent by adding lawful rent increases to the 1950 maximum rent of $60, not the 1983 maximum rent calculated by a number of factors. The court sent the case back to the DHCR for recalculation of tenant's legal rent. Because the case had been pending since 1985 and tenant was 73 years old, the court ordered the DHCR to issue its new ruling within 45 days.
Santo v. DHCR: NYLJ, p. 37, col. 3 (2/17/99) (Sup. Ct. Queens; Schmidt, J)