DRA Didn't Credit Landlord with Refund
LVT Number: 11532
Tenant complained of a rent overcharge. The DRA ruled for tenant. The DRA found that tenant was overcharged by $8,400, including interest on overcharges collected between December 1, 1986, and November 30, 1987, and triple damages on overcharges collected from December 1, 1987, through November 30, 1991. Landlord appealed, claiming that the DRA didn't take into account the fact that landlord made a $2,200 refund to tenant in August 1991. The DHCR ruled for landlord and recalculated the overcharge to reflect the refund. The DHCR found that most of the overcharge was due to a hypertechnical error of compounding a guidelines increase during the same guidelines period. This and the fact that landlord refunded the overcharge, including interest, before issuance of the DRA's order showed that the overcharge wasn't willful and triple damages weren't warranted.
C & S Mgmt.: DHCR Adm. Rev. Dckt. No. FL110386RO (1/31/97) [5-page document]