DHCR Won't Consider Tenant's Unsupported Rent Fraud Claim
LVT Number: #31351
Tenant complained to the DHCR in 2018 of rent overcharge and improper apartment deregulation. The DRA ruled for tenant and found a rent overcharge of $4,446, including triple damages. Landlord and tenant both appealed and lost. Tenant claimed that the DRA's calculation chart was incorrect and that fraud by the landlord required review of rent history records going back more than four years. But tenant failed to offer proof of a scheme to remove the apartment from rent stabilization and a mere assertion of fraud was insufficient to cast doubt on the base date rent in this case. Landlord appealed the triple damages, claiming that there was no willful overcharge. But landlord presented no credible arguments that the overcharge wasn't willful. Rent Stabilization Code Section 2526.1 presumes that a landlord's overcharge is willful, with few exceptions.
Yildiz/563 W 173rd Street Realty Inc.: DHCR Adm. Rev. Docket Nos. IS410082RK, IS410083RK (3/3/21) [5-pg. doc.]