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I wish to exercise my succession right to RS apartment

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I wish to exercise my succession right to RS apartment

Postby manmanmoy » Wed Jan 31, 2018 5:36 pm

hello

1. my mother recently passed away and I wish to exercise my succession rights.
2. I have been living in apartment for the last twenty years, and I have no other residences, mortgages, or properties.
3. I have been paying the rent from my own checking account for at least the last fifteen years. ( For about a ten year period the rent was automatically deducted from my checking account. However, within the last five years the rent was alternately paid every other month from my mother's checking account and my own. e.g. I would pay Jan, March, May, July, Sep, Nov while my mother's account would pay the other months).
4. I have emails from the landlord's office which stated that "it was OK to accept payment from the son (i.e. "me") dated 2002
5. In 2009 I sent the landlord a form RA23.5. (Although I have a copy of the original document, I misplaced the certified / mail acceptance receipt. However, In addition to sending by USPS, I sent the landlord a copy of the form via email. I have follow up emails with the landlord's office where they assured me they would keep the form in my mother's file.
6. When I filed the lease renewal forms, I always make sure that I am listed as an occupant. However, when they mail back a copy of the signed lease agreement, it does not include a list of occupants (i.e. the signed page only includes the primary tenant). I do have a copy of the full renewal forms, and I make sure to email them a copy of the renewal forms which include the occupant listing.
7. The current two year lease took effect on Dec. 1 2017, and my mother passed away about three weeks later. (Naturally I paid the Jan & Feb 2018 rents from my checking account without any issues.
My apologies for the long background, but here is my question:

Is there a particular format to use when writing the landlord to inform them that I wish to exercise succession rights?

Would something as simple as this be acceptable (or do I need to include more detail):

To Whom It May Concern:

Please be advised that Jane Smith has recently passed away (attached is a copy of the death certificate). I would like to inform you that I wish to exercise my succession rights. Please address the lease renewal to John Smith.

Thank you

thank you very much for your time
manmanmoy
 
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Re: I wish to exercise my succession right to RS apartment

Postby TenantNet » Wed Jan 31, 2018 6:18 pm

We removed the name you used to sign your post. Chances are that's not your real name (compared to your email address), but still just in case remember to NEVER use your real name on a public internet forum.

Now, first, get familiar with DHCR rules on succession: http://www.nyshcr.org/Rent/FactSheets/orafac30.pdf

We always recommend tenants seeking succession consult with a tenant attorney (not a regular attorney) in order to get all your documentation in order. LLs are very savvy at finding loopholes, so you have to do everything right. Getting the right advice could save you years of litigation and legal costs.

Now, remember that you must have lived in the unit with your mother/parent for two years before she left or passed. In your case it seems pretty clean, but look at it closely. If YOU are a senior or disabled, then the time is one year.

That the LL accepted rent from your name supports your case - that you have a landlord-tenant relationship with the LL, although that might be separate from succession rights. Still, it helps. The LL's emails seem to have waived any right for the LL to object.

Your sending the LL the DHCR form RA-23.5 http://www.nyshcr.org/Forms/Rent/ra235.pdf also supports your claim.

So far it seems like there should be no problem.

I don't know of any particular form to use in writing the LL, but again, having an attorney doing it for you sends a strong signal to the LL to not do anything stupid. Ot if you're reluctant to have a lawyer send the wrong signal to the LL, you can have the atty supply the text of the letter with you signing it.

Can you do it without an attorney? Sure. It really depends on your landlord and if he/she is litigious.
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Re: I wish to exercise my succession right to RS apartment

Postby manmanmoy » Thu Feb 01, 2018 12:51 pm

thank you - i guess my question can be refined. Given that my goal is to
" notify the landlord that the prime tenant has moved away or died" and "your letter should ask for the renewal lease to be sent in your name at renewal time" - do you think that the wording suffices to fulfill those conditions?

Please be advised that Jane Smith has recently passed away (attached is a copy of the death certificate). I would like to inform you that I wish to exercise my succession rights. Please address the lease renewal to John Smith.


-incidentally, the reason I am doing it myself is because two things can happen after I submit the letter to the LL: either they continue to accept my checks, or not. Since the two year lease only took effect last month, there should be plenty of time to deal with any complications that arise.
manmanmoy
 
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Re: I wish to exercise my succession right to RS apartment

Postby TenantNet » Thu Feb 01, 2018 2:51 pm

I think you should consult with a tenant attorney who has experience in succession issues before you send any letter.

Look, succession can get complicated, very complicated. What I mentioned in my first reply and is also in the DHCR fact sheet ... is just the tip of the iceberg. It might run you a few hundred to get legal advice, but it's worth it when leaving something out, or doing it the wrong way, might result in long and expensive litigation.

For example, see this case just out today: http://nycourts.gov/reporter/3dseries/2 ... _00556.htm
This is 2nd Dept, so that's Brooklyn and Queens, but not Manhattan and Bronx. Expect to see it go to the Court of Appeals. Your average ambulance chasing lawyer down the block who also does slip & falls, and green cards -- doesn't follow this stuff.

This is not your situation, but it does show the complexity of succession. One thing I know from this forum is that cases tenants describe here are often a lot more complex.

Can you do it yourself? Sure. We don't know everything about your situation. We don't know the temperament of your landlord. If it works out, then great.

BTW, are you also the executor of the estate of your mother? Has it gone through probate? That can also factor in to situations like this.
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Re: I wish to exercise my succession right to RS apartment

Postby manmanmoy » Thu Feb 01, 2018 2:59 pm

my question is actually specific to the wording of the letter. I appreciate that you are counseling me to seek an attorney, but the question is specific in regards to whether those words satisfy these conditions: notify the landlord that the prime tenant has moved away or died" and "your letter should ask for the renewal lease to be sent in your name at renewal time."
manmanmoy
 
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