Nonprimary Residence Claim Dismissed Despite Some Proof of Second Apartment
LVT Number: #31470
Landlord sued to evict rent-stabilized tenant based on nonprimary residence. The trial court ruled against landlord, who appealed and lost. Tenant and her seven witnesses demonstrated that she maintained an ongoing substantial physical nexus to the apartment for actual living purposes and that she "never lived" at her estranged husband's studio apartment in NYC. The trial court gave more weight to the testimony of tenant and the other witnesses than to documentary proof, such as tenant's joint tax returns and voter registration, which listed the husband's address as tenant's address. While the trial court acknowledged there was "troubling evidence" that tenant simultaneously maintained a second rent-stabilized apartment for a significant period of time, tenant showed that she stopped living at that other apartment in 1988, after which it was occupied by her brother and a work friend. The appeals court found no grounds to disturb the trial judge's findings, and Rent Stabilization Code Section 2520.6(u) provided that "no single factor shall be solely determinative" of primary residence.
Kevco Grp. LLC v. Simmons: Index No. 570024/21, 2021 NY Slip Op 50471(U)(App. T. 1 Dept.; 5/24/21; Higgitt, JP, Brigantti, Hagler, JJ)