Landlord Didn't Show Tenant's Basement Apartment Was Illegally Occupied
LVT Number: #33024
Landlord sued to evict rent-stabilized tenant, claiming that occupancy of the basement/cellar apartment was unlawful. The court granted tenant's request to dismiss the case. Landlord didn't deny that tenant was rent stabilized, and no government agency had issued a violation or imposed civil or criminal penalties against landlord based on tenant's occupancy. Landlord relied on advice of an architect who said that use of the apartment was illegal and not approvable by DOB. But the architect's opinion wasn't sufficient to support landlord's claim. Landlord had submitted no plans to DOB seeking legalization of the apartment, and had received no determination of the unit's status.
35-09 LLC v. Navedo-Perez: Index No. L&T 318560/2022, 2023 NY Slip Op 23378, NYLJ No. 1702018844 (Civ. Ct. Queens; 12/6/23; Schiff, J)