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Senior citizen being harassed by landlord

Posted by Sandra on October 25, 1999 at 19:48:10:

My father is a senior citizen living in a 2 bedroom rent stabilized apartment building in Queens, New York. Since the spring, he's made numerous complaints to his landlord about a constant leak on his bathroom ceiling. The landlord has come in and just patched up the hole in the ceiling, but the damage is in deperate need of a plumber's attention. He's brought in supposed plumber's but the leak continues. My father suspects that these plumbers are not certified other words, just handymen. Starting in September of this year, the problem has really gotten out of hand whereby the ceiling is starting to fall. We've made several requests to the landlord to come and repair, but he claims that no one is ever home on the appointment dates. We even went so far as to place an emergency complaint with the DHCR Emergency Complaint Bureau, and an inspector was sent. The inspector's finding was that the ceiling needed immediate attention. They contacted the landlord and made an appointment with both him and my father. Well, my father waited and waited for the landlord, and he never showed up. He claims he did. We're going into November now, and we're still playing this cat and mouse game with the landlord. An appointment is made, people wait, and he never shows up. Afterward, he claims he rang the doorbell and no one was home. What recourse does my father have? I think an attorney is the only answer at this point. Unfortunately, my father is a senior citizen on a fixed income and he cannot afford an attorney. What can he do? Any help would be appreciated.

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