New York Landlord Tenant Act

By Tiffany Garden
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Residential rental agreements in New York are controlled by the New York Landlord and Tenant Act. This piece of legislation controls all aspects of a rental agreement between a tenant and landlord. Some parts of the act explain the rights a landlord and tenant have in various situations, and other parts tell the landlord and tenant their state-mandated responsibilities. The New York Landlord and Tenant Act is also important because it contains all eviction laws.

Tenant Rights

A New York state tenant has certain rights conveyed by the act, and violations of those rights gives the tenant cause for bringing action against the landlord or terminating the lease. The right to privacy means a tenant has the right to enjoy his home without harassment by a landlord or his agents. A New York tenant is protected against discrimination or retaliation from a landlord in regard to the rental agreement. The tenant cannot have adverse action taken against her because she complained about an aspect of the residence or reported housing-code violations. The Fair Housing Laws prevent any discriminatory factor, such as race or family status, to be considered by a landlord for any aspect of the rental agreement.

Landlord Rights

A landlord in New York has the right to enter his rental units for repairs, inspections, showings and emergencies. The first three reasons require advance written notice, and the landlord or his agents must schedule the visit during normal business hours. A landlord also has the right to include rules and regulations in the lease terms, as long as the rules have tenant safety and security in mind. The rules must also be applied fairly throughout all rental units the landlord controls. Most landlord rights come from the different types of legal recourse he has in the event of a landlord-tenant dispute, such as the eviction procedure and ways to end a month-to-month lease.

Mobile Home Parks

Mobile home park rules and regulations are also contained in the New York Landlord and Tenant Act. These rules are different from the rest of the act, as they pertain to mobile home owners who rent or lease a lot and utilities from a mobile home park owner. Tenants renting mobile homes from mobile home owners would still look to the general Landlord and Tenant Act.

A few provisions of the mobile home park part of this act control the duties and responsibilities of tenants and park owners toward one another. A mobile home owner must receive a written copy of park rules. The only reasons a park owner can evict one of his tenants are: failing to leave after the lease period ends, failing to pay rent, the mobile home is used for an illegal business, the owner breaks a lease term or the land use of the park changes.

Warranty of Habitability

A warranty of habitability refers to the livability of the rental unit. A New York landlord is responsible for making sure the rental unit is fit for living in. The unit must have running water and heat, unless the utilities are controlled by the tenant. There must not be any defects that threaten the safety or health of the tenant. Major repairs to home systems and appliances are handled by the landlord unless otherwise noted in the lease agreement. A tenant can take action against a landlord that does not make timely repairs when notified of defects.

Eviction

A large part of the New York Landlord and Tenant Act covers the landlord's right to bring an eviction case to court for specific reasons. A landlord has the ability to evict a New York tenant for late or unpaid rent or holdover cases.

A written notice starts off the New York eviction process. Tenants at the end of their lease term are served a 30-day notice to quit---staying beyond that time turns them into holdover tenants. A three-day notice to pay or quit is used for unpaid rent cases. Ten-day notices are used in all other cases, which are also considered holdover cases.

After the time period of the notice is up, the landlord can file the eviction case in housing court if the tenant remains in the home. Forms T206D, T207D, T206DC and T216 are filed for nonpayment cases, while forms X210, X210C, X211 and T216 are filed for holdover cases. The hearing is scheduled, and the tenant is served with a court summons. Both landlord and tenant are allowed to plea their case in the local Housing Court. Once the case is decided, the judge files an Entry of Judgment. Most eviction cases go against the tenant unless there is strong evidence against a landlord's reasons.