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PRO-Tenant & PRO-bono Attorney for Offense in Rent Overcharge Case

Posted by TM on February 16, 1999 at 10:45:31:

I'm a long-time permanent resident in an SRO Hotel/UWS. Due to a revocation of Order Finding Rent Overcharges via PAR filed by LL and granted four years later...LL's attorney served me at end of October with instant 3-day demand for a claim of over $83,000. This is an extreme and unbearable financial hardship created by the fact that it took DHCR four years to decide [not "a reasonable length of time" for sure!] and I was advised to file a petition for emergency bankruptcy. Does appealing to Federal laws having precedent over State laws really get at the heart of my case in determining what the legal-registered is, as mandated by RSL?
For many years I was neither registered as the current tenant, nor was the current rent I was paying listed in the Annual Rent Registrations. All of a sudden, back in 1990 - after being a permanent resident for over five years before and NEVER LISTED as the current tenant and paying more than twice the amount of the registered rent, I received ARR finally listing me at the tenant and the excessive amount of rent I was paying - the registered rent in a consistent history going back to 1984 had suddenly jumped from a figure around $400 to over $900 - with no reason given on the apartment registration form for this increase . . .
Landlord, while admitting "registration irregularities" attempted to correct this situation by filing purported AMENDED REGISTRATIONS for both of the preceding years at the same time, by BOTH changing the name of the tenant to my name AND the rents paid - the so-called amended registrations were never served on me but relied upon as fact and evidence by DHCR in revoking the overcharge findings. In other words, rents were already registered for those years in which I was the current tenant but not registered as such paying actual rents more than twice the amounts of those registered for a number of years - isn't this EVASION OF THE LAW? and ren't there possible criminal penalties, apart from civil issues, that the landlord is subject to?
Talking about "civil", when the LL's attorney and I were leaving the Housing Courtroom and I told the judge about my bankruptcy filing, this person - shall we call him "Mr. O", told me in a venomous voice .....
"Mr.M, You Can Drop Dead!" Is this treatment of a defendant on the part of a practicing attorney just to be overlooked?
Responses and follow-up postings are appreciated...

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