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Re: Death in family. a good case!

Posted by Anna on June 13, 2000 at 09:04:38:

In Reply to: Re: Death in family. a case????? posted by richard on June 12, 2000 at 23:29:57:

A good case, thanks richard!

The summary on Tenant.Net concerns only the succession rights part and is much easier to understand: from Sep 1999:

Case Caption:
Vartarian v. Brady
Issues/Legal Principles:
Nephew attains succession rights because such rights accrued before June
19, 1997 when the law changed to exclude nephews from the roster of family
members who may succeed to a tenancy after the prime tenant has
permanently vacated or died.
succession rights
Civil Court, New York County
Hon. Lucy Billings
September 29, 1999
NYLJ, page 27, col 5
Referred Statutes:
9 NYCRR 2204.6(d); Public Housing Law 14(4); Administrative Code
26-403(2); RPAPL 741
Since 1997, the tenant has lived in Far Rockaway to care for her ailing
brother. Left in the apartment was the tenant's nephew who resided with the
tenant from 1992 until she vacated in 1997. Before 1997, the law granted
nephews succession rights, and the nephew would have become the tenant
of record had the law not changed because he lived with his aunt for two
years before she permanently vacated. However, on June 19, 1997, the law
changed to exclude nephews from obtaining succession rights. The issue
before the court was whether the new law should be applied retroactively.
The court held that it should not, citing various case law for the principle that
"[w]here a new law confers a tenancy right, the law is applied retroactively,
but where it takes away a right conferred by the old law, the new law is not
applied retroactively." Since the nephew would be evicted if the new law was
applied retroactively, the court concluded that the old law (when his rights
accrued) applies. In that regard, the nephew was made the tenant of record of
the rent stabilized apartment. The court also held that the 1997 new law's rent
increases in succession rights cases do not apply to the nephew. This is
because the vacancy allowance is available when the tenant has vacated on
the effective date of the law (June, 1997). The nephew, however, who was
the de facto tenant on this date, was still in possession. Thus, the court ruled
that the vacancy increases do not kick in against the nephew. The court also
ruled that the petition should be dismissed because the agent who signed the
notice of termination had lost his authority since his principle, the owner, died
about a month earlier. The authority of an agent terminates at death of the
principle. Additionally, there was no authorized person to act on behalf of the
owner's estate when the proceeding commenced. Without an effective
predicate notice, a holdover proceeding cannot be maintained.

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