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Division of Housing and Community Renewal

Levy Tolman LLP is well versed in New York’s rent regulations, including the rent stabilization law and code and the rent control law. We regularly consult our clients and provide guidance on complying with the complicated and intricate rent laws. As part of our representation, we provide due diligence reviews to prospective purchasers of real estate and to existing owners, in order to assess the liability of the building, to determine the legal rents and whether there are any rent overcharges. Our guidance saves our clients money whether they are purchasing a building and negotiating a contract price, or whether the client is preparing to sell the building and wants to maximize the building’s value. 

We routinely defend owners and landlords in the full gamut of proceedings brought at the Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) including succession complaints, lease violation complaints, rent overcharge complaints, and reduction in services complaints. We also represent owners and landlords in proceedings to restore the rent, modify an existing service, obtain a rent increase based upon a Major Capital Improvement (MCI). We also file owner exemption applications where we seek an order from DHCR that an apartment or building is exempt from regulation due to substantial rehabilitation or high rent/high income deregulation. We also file annual apartment registrations on behalf of our clients.  

 

Felix Tavarez, Rent Administrative Docket No. CS 410039 RV (02/24/2015)

In this lease violation complaint filed at DHCR, we achieved a victory for the owner where the occupant of the apartment asserted a succession claim and sought the issuance of a rent stabilized lease in his name. We conducted an investigation of the tenant and discovered that the tenant of record died eight years earlier, that someone has been forging the tenant’s name on several rent stabilized renewal leases and that the occupant was not a “family member” of the deceased tenant entitled to protections of the rent stabilization law. The occupant was unable to rebut the findings of our investigation and DHCR denied the succession claim. The denial permitted the landlord to commence an eviction proceeding against all of the occupants of the apartment as no one had a right to succession. Click here for the decision.

 

In the Matter of the Administrative Appeals of Jeani Dicarlo and Joy Keithline, DHCR Admin. Rev. Docket No. DU410062RT (03/14/2016); Joy Keithline v. Jeani Dicarlo, L&T Index No. 58568/15 (Schreiber, J., Civ. Co. New York Co., May 20, 2015)

Levy Tolman LLP represented the prime tenant in defense of her subtenant’s claim that the prime-tenant was an illusory tenant and was not entitled to keep her apartment of 35 years. The subtenant sought the rent stabilized lease to be in her own name. We successfully represented our client and the DHCR affirmed its order wherein it found that the prime-tenant was not an illusory tenant and that the subtenant had no rights to a renewal lease.  In a holdover proceeding to evict the subtenant, the Court granted the prime-tenant’s motion for summary judgment and held that the Housing Court had to give effect to the DHCR Order finding that the subtenant had no rights to the apartment. We were able to evict the subtenant and secure the apartment for the prime-tenant. Click here for the decisions.