Super Did Work as Independent Contractor
LVT Number: 18263
Tenant complained of a rent overcharge. He moved into the apartment in 1999 at a monthly rent of $1,300. Landlord increased tenant's rent by $700 after renovating the apartment following a fire. The work cost over $43,000, but landlord based the 1/40th improvement on only $26,775 of the cost. The rest was covered by insurance. Tenant claimed that renovation work done after a fire didn't qualify for a 1/40th increase. He also argued that landlord's building super did the work, so that the super's wages shouldn't be included in the cost. The DRA ruled against tenant. Tenant appealed and lost. Landlord was entitled to 1/40th increase for apartment improvements made after a fire, as long as the cost wasn't covered by landlord's insurance. And landlord showed that the super didn't start working as a building employee until sometime after the renovations were done. Checks paid to the super for that work weren't made on a regular basis, weren't in equal amounts, and weren't consistent with wages. The super also submitted a sworn statement that he did the work over five months, was paid in installments, and did the work as an independent contractor.
Teboul: DHCR Adm. Rev. Dckt. No. SG410131RT (6/2/05) [4-pg. doc.]