Tenant Can Conduct Pretrial Questioning of Landlord
LVT Number: 15852
Landlord sued to evict rent-stabilized tenant so that landlord's brother and brother's minor son could live in the apartment. Landlord's brother was the building's managing agent, and landlord lived in Israel. Tenant asked the court for permission to conduct pretrial questioning of landlord, his brother, and his brother's son. Landlord's brother agreed to be questioned, but landlord otherwise objected. Landlord claimed that he wasn't well and lived too far away. The court ruled for tenant, except that he couldn't question the brother's son. Landlord admitted that he traveled to New York at times, and there was no showing that he was too ill to travel. Tenant could ask questions about landlord's intent, a recent change in the ownership form from partnership to individual owners, and the end date of tenant's last renewal lease, which tenant claimed was a different date from the one claimed by landlord.
Schwartz v. Seidman: NYLJ, 5/8/02, p. 21, col. 2 (Civ. Ct. NY; Schneider, J)