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West 109 Realty LLC v. Hidalgo

Civil Court of the City of New York, New York County

January 8, 2014

West 109 Realty LLC, Petitioner -Landlord
v.
Angela Hidalgo 70 WEST 109TH STREET - APT 24 NEW YORK, NEW YORK 10025, Respondent-Tenant "JOHN DOE" AND "JANE DOE" Respondents-Undertenants.

Unpublished Opinion

HORING WELIKSON & ROSEN, PC Attorneys for Petitioner By: Melissa S. Levin, Esq.

Attorney for Respondent By: Luis A. Henriquez Carrero, Esq.

Sabrina B. Kraus, J.

BACKGROUND

The underlying summary nonpayment proceeding was commenced by WEST 109 REALTY LLC (Petitioner) against ANGELA HIDALGO (Respondent) the rent stabilized tenant of record, seeking to recover possession of 70 WEST 109TH STREET - APT 24, NEW YORK, NEW YORK 10025 (Subject Premises) based on the allegation that Respondent failed to pay rent due for the Subject Premises.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Petitioner issued a three day rent demand dated January 8, 2013, seeking $2015.34 in arrears, for a period covering October 2012 through January 2013, at a monthly rent of $618.74. The petition is dated January 21, 2013, and the proceeding was initially returnable on February 13, 2013.

Respondent appeared pro se and filed an answer on February 4, 2013, asserting that a portion of the rent sought had already been paid, and that there were repairs necessary in the Subject Premises. The parties adjourned the proceeding to April 3, 2013, for Respondent to obtain counsel.

Respondent obtained counsel, who moved for leave to file an amended pleading on May 9, 2013. The motion was granted on consent. The amended answer asserted various defenses including that the monthly rent sued for by Petitioner was unlawful, based on a prior rent reduction order issued by DHCR.

On September 10, 2013, Respondent moved for summary judgment and an order dismissing the proceeding. On December 3, 2013, the court heard oral argument and on December 10, 2013, after further submissions the motion was submitted and the court reserved decision.

DISCUSSION

Respondent was granted a rent reduction by DHCR in 1990, based on the conditions existing in the Subject Premises. DHCR reduced Respondent's rent from $282.91 to $245.79 per month. The Order issued under Docket No. ZDD410069S and provided in pertinent part:

The legal regulated rent is reduced by the percentage of the most recent guidelines adjustment for the tenant's lease which commenced before the effective date of this rent reduction. Furthermore, no rent increases may be collected after the effective date of this ...

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