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Post HP Actions

NYC Housing Court Practice/Procedures

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Re: Post HP Actions/ no building registration

Postby vegastar » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:48 pm

In January 2016 I filed an HP action to, hopefully, get my LL to remove 12 housing violations.There several court hearings culminating in an inquest. My LL did not show for any hearings. Two judgments were issued for $4.500 and $2,000, the latter to be paid to me.
Recently, I found out that the building is not registered. A fellow tenant told me that technically speaking, the LL cannot collect rent and much less initiate a non-payment proceeding against those of us withholding rent for not getting repairs.
Now I wonder if the LL's no-shows for court were related to not having a building registration and if this building status can affect my legal actions against this LL. The court attorney urged me to file a motion to restore my case already. Since the LL has not paid me the $2k I can now place a lien on the building.
Basically, I want to know what the consequences are of this non-registration if my LL keeps the current building status. And why would they not register the building?
vegastar
 
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby TenantNet » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:56 pm

Do you mean not registered with DHCR, or with HPD? There's a difference. It's my understanding that lack of a building registration with HPD can bar the LL from commencing a proceeding in housing court. But I don't know if that means he can't respond to a HP proceeding. Also, in your case, your bldg might be a Class B (SRO or hotel) and I don't know how that might affect things. Most regular apartment buildings are Class A.

Even if barred from a Housing Court "summary" proceeding, they might be able to commence an "action" in Supreme Court. More expensive for them, and that's a different animal altogether.

Restore what case? Why? You just said the case was over.

You might be able to take the judgment off your rent, but check with an attorney first.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby vegastar » Tue Dec 13, 2016 5:11 pm

The building is registered with HPD. The court lawyer said if repairs are still not done, I should file a motion to restore right away. With this pattern I foresee one motion after another, more penalties; maybe more for me too; of course going unpaid. Hamster on a wheel comes to mind.
I filed the initial hp action almost a year ago. They missed all court dates. What kind of 'action' could they take before the supreme court - non-payment? This info is on the hpd entry: A units: 0; B units: 471. Would that be the class?
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby TenantNet » Tue Dec 13, 2016 5:41 pm

If registered with HPD, then the LL can bring a proceeding in Housing Court.

Restore what?

There are two types of court cases:
1. Proceedings, AKA Summary proceedings, filed in Housing Court. These are supposed to be streamlined. No discovery without court permission.

2. Actions, usually filed in Supreme Court (also maybe Civil Court). More complex.

The Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law (RPAPL) goes into detail.

Yes, that's Class B.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby vegastar » Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:08 pm

LL is not registered. Found something odd. Have 2 addresses, one with street number 29, the other is 30. I use the 30 address, the LL uses 29. However, in the HPD records they use 27 which is not a valid building/address. The 29 and 30 are basically blank in the hpd records. Most information available is under the 27 address?! The have certificates of occupancy listed going years back, building violations. Don't get why 29 is not used. Never heard of 27 as address. Does not exist.
I need to find out then if the LL is obligated to respond to the proceedings I have initiated. I can contact the MFY lawyer and see if knows something about that.
The last was 'to punish for contempt'. Will know in a few days about what to restore.
Will look over RPAPL asap. Thanks!
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby TenantNet » Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:14 pm

Above you said "The building is registered with HPD." Now you say the LL is not registered. Can't be both, which is it?

Some buildings can have more than one address. Use the Block/Lot numbers.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby vegastar » Wed Dec 14, 2016 4:59 am

There are 2 entries in the hpd records. On the 29 ..address, it only says 'There is no registration information for this building. It says 'Inactive'. No block/lot info given. The 27 .. address does show a bunch of information including a Building Registration Summary Report (+ complaint history, open violations,etc.). It's Block 859/ Lot 26. The registration was for 6/2/2015 - 9/1/2016 and gives names of the corp heads. That was the previous LL. Toward the head of the page it says: This Property Is Not Currently Validly Registered With HP. Looks like the registration expired a short time ago. The current owners took over around Nov 10, 2015. No trace of them -
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Re: Post HP Actions/ Post Inquest

Postby vegastar » Mon Jan 30, 2017 11:30 pm

As I said before, my landlord has not shown up for any court hearings nor has he made repairs. I went to the court house today to find out what's next. I did not get to talk to the judge myself; the court lawyer did and told me to obtain a bench warrant against my LL. She said to go to the dept of of housing, DHR, for that .. I found no such thing: DHR = dept of human rights, and there is HP&D. If anyone knows which agency issues bench warrants, please let me know. Otherwise, I'll call around til I find it.
Does anyone here have any experience in going after a LL with a bench warrant? Please share.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby TenantNet » Mon Jan 30, 2017 11:52 pm

You probably need to check with the court atty again to see which agency he meant. There's DHCR (now called HCR) which is a state agency for rent control/rent stabilization. Division of Housing and Community Renewal. But I don't think he meant that.

There's HPD, a city agency. Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development (covers all housing, not just RC/RS).

As for bench warrants, I don't know how that works.

Here's one link that might help:
http://www.queensdefense.com/warrants-new-york-city/

As the article says, you should work with a lawyer on this. Where is your MFY attorney?
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby vegastar » Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:31 pm

Thank you very much! Yes, I will contact my MFY lawyer today about this. I am very curious about this whole process. The judge assured me they will find the manager. I am wondering about this because the he is the former general manager and his name only appears on my initial HP filing. He has also ignored my requests for repairs prior to the HP. He left the company about one month before I filed. The most egregious violations have been made by the current owners. They are the ones who never showed up in court, still ignoring requests for repairs ...
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Re: Post HP Actions / again!!

Postby vegastar » Thu Feb 02, 2017 4:24 pm

My case got royally derailed via misinformation. The court att'y at inquest said to restore my case asap for contempt if no repairs done. I went back to the courthouse 'to restore'. Was told by another court att'y that this can't be done since a judgment had been issued already. After she talked to the judge she tells me I should get a bench warrant. When I emailed the other att'y, he said to see him about the warrant. That was today. He said I need a 'contempt charge' in order to get a bench warrant. Since I don't have a cch. at this point, the only way to get a bench warrant is to start the HP stuff all over! -- I have come this far, I think I should go ahead with it. The other option is to do nothing and wait for them to do a non-payment proceeding. And who knows how long this could take! The building is not even registered yet. A repeat HP proceeding option might produce faster results. Plus, I have done all my homework already: papers, pictures, timelines etc. organized, and ready for presentation. I asked if the 1st round of HP actions would be void if I start a second round. I was told 'no'. Also, the penalties still stand.
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HP #2 or Civil Penalties

Postby vegastar » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:39 pm

My first HP proceedings culminated in an inquest and a $ 2,000 penalty award.
Still no action on the LL's part.
I now have a choice between starting a new HP proceeding or filing an order to show cause for civil penalties. Now what? Which would be the better route to take?
Thank you in advance for any comments, insights.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby TenantNet » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:52 pm

Do you want the money, or some things fixed? I'd take the money and keep pushing for the repairs.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby vegastar » Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:52 pm

I cross-checked the info I was given at the pro se office with the court attorney (HPD) who assisted me when I was in court. He said to file an HP if there are new violations. There aren't. He would not confirm the notion of filing an order to show cause for civil penalties. I was already before the judge who assessed penalties. Plus, I could not find any information that this otc is a viable strategy.
I came across info on the housing court website that says that there is a 'type of HP action that specifically addresses harassment; it can include repair issues. It includes 'only certain types'. It does not say which ones. I believe that in my case - ignoring court-orders, not making repairs even after requests going 2 years back - qualifies for harassment. I want to find out if this might be a way to keep my case going.
Otherwise, it's anticipating the LL going for non-payment.
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Re: Post HP Actions

Postby vegastar » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:36 pm

As for Harassment claims via an HP action - I found some more info on this: it applies 'to any act or omission ... that causes or is intended to cause ... to vacate the unit or to surrender or waive any occupancy rights.' Here civil penalties can be sought ...
I think I could argue 'intent' ... I don't have any other explanation for the LL's behavior, action by non-action.
If anyone on this board has done this, please share your experience.
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