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Millennium Hills Housing Development Fund Corp v. Adrianne L. Patterson

SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK APPELLATE TERM: 9th and 10th JUDICIAL DISTRICTS


April 6, 2011

MILLENNIUM HILLS HOUSING DEVELOPMENT FUND CORP.,
APPELLANT,
v.
ADRIANNE L. PATTERSON,
RESPONDENT.

Appeal from a final judgment of the District Court of Suffolk County, Third District (C. Stephen Hackeling, J.), entered October 16, 2009.

Millennium Hills Hous. Dev. Fund Corp. v Patterson

Appellate Term, Second Department

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

This opinion is uncorrected and will not be published in the printed Official Reports.

Decided on April 6, 2011

PRESENT: TANENBAUM, J.P., MOLIA and LaCAVA, JJ.

The final judgment, after a non-jury trial, dismissed the petition in a holdover summary proceeding.

ORDERED that the final judgment is affirmed, without costs.

Landlord, a not-for-profit organization, brought this holdover proceeding to recover the subject HUD-subsidized premises, alleging that it had terminated tenant's lease based on violations of two sections thereof that, prohibit a tenant from, respectively, failing to maintain sufficient heat to keep pipes from freezing, and causing damage to the tenant's unit. Following notice, a grievance hearing had been held before one of landlord's employees, who had recommended termination of the tenancy. After a non-jury trial, the District Court found in favor of tenant and dismissed the petition. We affirm.

The decision of a fact-finding court should not be disturbed upon appeal unless it is obvious that the court's conclusions could not be reached under any fair interpretation of the evidence (see Claridge Gardens v Menotti, 160 AD2d 544 [1990]). Furthermore, the determination of the trier of fact as to issues of credibility is given substantial deference, as the trial court's opportunity to observe and evaluate the testimony and demeanor of the witnesses affords it a better perspective from which to assess the credibility of the witnesses (see Vizzari v State of New York, 184 AD2d 564 [1992]; Kincade v Kincade, 178 AD2d 510, 511 [1991]).

The District Court's findings after trial that tenant had not violated the lease provisions requiring her to maintain sufficient heat to prevent freezing of piped water and that landlord had failed to demonstrate damage to tenant's unit constituting serious violations of the lease are supported by the record and will not be disturbed on appeal. Accordingly, the final judgment is affirmed.

Tanenbaum, J.P., Molia and LaCava, JJ., concur.

Decision Date: April 06, 2011

20110406

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