Monday, January 20, 2020

Eye on Real Estate Q&A: Rent Control Succession Rights

On this week's episode of Eye on Real Estate, January 18, 2020, we were asked about succession rights of a niece on rent controlled property.

NYC's Rent Guidelines Board actually answers this question as follows:

A rent controlled tenant cannot grant the right to live in the apartment through a will. Nor can someone succeed a rent controlled apartment by paying the rent with personal checks. There are specific rules about who may succeed a rent controlled apartment.In general, for rent controlled apartments throughout New York State, any "family member" of the tenant may have the right to protection from eviction when the tenant dies or permanently leaves the apartment.The family member's right to protection from eviction is dependent upon such family member having resided with the tenant as a primary resident in the apartment for two years immediately prior to the death of, or permanent leaving of, the apartment by the tenant (one year for family members who are senior citizens or disabled persons).The family member may also have the right to protection from eviction if he/she resided with the tenant from the inception of the tenancy or from the commencement of the relationship.If all the requirements for succession are met, the new tenant's rent would be the same as it was when your aunt was the primary tenant, until the next increase, which can occur once a year in rent controlled apartments. 
For definitions of family members, disabled persons and more information, see HCR Fact Sheet #30: Succession Rights.
Or, you may wish to contact NYS Homes and Community Renewal (HCR), the state agency which administers the rent laws.---
It's noted that a niece is not a listed family member for succession rights at 9 NYCRR 2204.6(d)(3) and therefore must prove emotional and financial commitment and interdependence between such person(s) and the tenant to have succession rights on top of the 2 year requirement.

So, as we suggested on the radio, please consult with an attorney rather than just going it alone when seeking these valuable succession rights through a succession application to DHCR. The alternative is an eviction proceeding being brought against you.

Listen to the podcast here. 


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