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Jefferson Valley Mall Limited Partnership v. Franchise Acquisition Group

New York Supreme Court, Appellate Term, Second Department


November 19, 2008

JEFFERSON VALLEY MALL LIMITED PARTNERSHIP, RESPONDENT,
v.
FRANCHISE ACQUISITION GROUP, INC., DOING BUSINESS AS GOODFELLA'S BRICK OVEN PIZZA, PASTA AND STEAK AND MODERN ART, APPELLANT.

Accepted for Miscellaneous Reports Publication

Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to Judiciary Law § 431.

As corrected through Wednesday, March 18, 2009

{**22 Misc 3d at 57}

OPINION OF THE COURT

Memorandum.

Final judgment reversed without costs and petition dismissed.

Tenant's motion to dismiss this nonpayment proceeding based on the pendency of the previously commenced ejectment action should have been granted. The act of commencing an ejectment action is deemed a re-entry by landlord into possession, and an election by landlord of the remedy of terminating the lease for breach of a condition (Janes v Paddell, 74 Misc 409 [App Term 1911]; 518 E. 80th St. Co., LLC v Smith, NYLJ, Jan. 29, 2003, at 19 [Civ Ct, NY County]; 2 Dolan, Rasch's Landlord and Tenant--Summary Proceedings § 32:5 [4th ed]; see also Samson v Rose, 65 NY 411 [1875]; Earl v Nalley, 273 App Div 451 [1948]). "[W]hile the ejectment action was pending, no summary proceedings could be brought by the landlord based on the continuance of the tenancy" (Fifty-fourth St. Realty Co. v Goodman, 80 Misc 639, 641 [App Term, 1st Dept 1913]). Accordingly, the final judgment is reversed and the petition dismissed.

We incidentally note that a proper rent notice must require "in the alternative, the payment of the rent, or the possession of the premises" (RPAPL 711 [2]; see Matter of Farone v Burns, 27 Misc 2d 998 [1961]; McMahon v Howe, 40 Misc 546 [1903]; 2 Dolan, Rasch's Landlord and Tenant--Summary Proceedings § 32:22 [4th ed]).

Tanenbaum, J. (dissenting and voting to affirm the final judgment in the following memorandum). In my view, tenant's motion to dismiss based on the pendency of the ejectment action was properly denied.

The principles set forth in the authorities relied upon by the majority arise from a period prior to the enactment of the CPLR, which expressly allows causes of action to "be stated alternatively or hypothetically" (CPLR 3014) and permits relief in the alternative to be demanded (CPLR 3017 [a]; see Gold v 29-15 Queens Plaza Realty, LLC, 43 AD3d 866 [2007]; see also Cohn v Lionel Corp., 21 NY2d 559 [1968]). Consequently, I would hold{**22 Misc 3d at 58} that the pendency of the ejectment action did not require the dismissal of the instant nonpayment proceeding (cf. Matter of Kern v Guller, 40 AD3d 1231 [2007] [allowing the inconsistent pleading of nonpayment and holdover causes of action]) and would affirm the final judgment.

McCabe, J.P., and Molia, J., concur; Tanenbaum, J., dissents in a separate memorandum.

20081119

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