Fair Market Rent Appeal Was Untimely and Not Subject to Fraud Claim
LVT Number: #31605
Tenant filed a fair market rent appeal (FMRA) in 2017, challenging the initial $2,400 rent set by landlord in 2012 after the prior rent-controlled tenant vacated the apartment. The DRA dismissed the FMRA as untimely because it was filed more than four years after the apartment was no longer subject to rent control.
Tenant appealed and lost. She claimed that the DRA failed to consider proof of landlord fraud, and that this extended the time within which to file a FMRA. Tenant also argued that landlord failed to give her a proper RR-1 notice that the unit was previously rent controlled at the time she rented the apartment.
The DHCR found that that since tenant's fraud claim was raised for the first time on appeal, it couldn't be considered. And because Rent Stabilization Code (RSC) Section 2521.1(a)(1) permitted landlord and tenant to agree upon a rent after rent control, subject to tenant's right to file a timely FMRA, the rent set by landlord couldn't be fraudulent. There also was no fraud because landlord gave tenant a rent-stabilized lease, registered the apartment as rent stabilized, and never attempted to deregulate the unit. And landlord's failure to give tenant an RR-1 form only extended the time for filing an FMRA from 90 days to four years. RSC Section 2522.3(c)(2) strictly provided that a FMRA shall be dismissed when filed more than four years after the rent-controlled tenant vacated.
Sanchez: DHCR Adm. Rev. Docket No. IX410003RT (7/6/21)[3-pg. document]