Settling Co-op Disputes? An Introduction to Housing Court

Settling Co-op Disputes?

Over two decades ago, an amendment to the New York City Civil Court Act transferred enforcement proceedings connected with housing to the Civil Court. This amendment established what we now know as housing court, where residential landlord and tenant disputes could be resolved. Since a co-op shareholder is, in effect, a tenant of the apartment corporation and executes a proprietary lease (in which the rights and responsibilities of both the corporation and the shareholder are set forth), use of the housing court is available to the co-op in the event of a breach of a shareholder’s obligation. At the present time, each New York City borough has its own housing court. Despite some of the problems with delays and shortage of available courtrooms, co-op issues continue to be resolved in housing court alongside landlord-tenant disputes.

The two most common types of landlord and tenant proceedings heard in the housing court are non-payment proceedings and holdover proceedings. Non-payment proceedings are those where a landlord (or a co-op corporation) brings an action for the non-payment of rent (or in the case of a co-op, maintenance). Holdover proceedings, on the other hand, are actions brought by the landlord or co-op against a tenant or shareholder alleging, among other things, that the shareholder has breached a substantial obligation of his or her proprietary lease, such as harboring a pet, subletting, or having an appliance without the permission or consent of the board of directors. Holdover proceedings also involve actions brought based upon the tenant or shareholder causing a nuisance such as odors, noise, etc.

Collecting Payment and Curing Defaults

Commencement of a non-payment action for the failure to pay maintenance and other charges, begins with the co-op’s attorney serving a predicate notice. The notice advises the shareholder that they are in default under their proprietary lease. The shareholder is granted a specific period of time within which to cure the default for non-payment, otherwise an eviction proceeding will be brought.

Many co-ops include late charges and other fees as money owed by the defaulting shareholder. Care must be given, however, to ensure that the proprietary lease authorizes those particular charges, otherwise the co-op opens itself up to counter-claims by the shareholder and for his or her legal fees, if the shareholder is successful. The most common abuse by co-ops is the inclusion of cumulative late charges, such as $25 the first month, $50 the second month, $75 the third month and so on. This type of late charge structure violates not only most proprietary leases (which provide that late fees can only be charged equal to the maximum legal rate of interest), but also violates usury laws. Since the purpose of the rent demand, or "Notice to Cure," is to afford the shareholder the opportunity to determine the claim’s accuracy, only those charges which are legal and permissible should be included in the notice.

It is also important that the notice be signed not by the co-op’s attorney, but by an officer of the corporation. There are a number of cases which indicated that a notice signed merely by the attorney was in violation of the Federal Debt Collection Act. Under this statute, the tenant and/or shareholder is entitled to a different kind of notice over a protracted period of time. Court decisions originally indicated that the notices signed by the attorney would void any landlord/tenant proceeding. The most recent cases, however, indicate that they would not, but that the co-op and/or attorney might be liable for damages. Thus, it would be wise for the co-op to have an officer sign the notices.

When bringing a holdover proceeding for a breach of the proprietary lease for subletting, harboring a pet, or installing an appliance without the consent of the board of directors, a notice must be sent pursuant to the "Notice" requirements of the proprietary lease, giving the shareholder a number of days, generally ten to 30, to cure the breach. With regard to non-payment, the notice requirement is three days. In the event that the tenant does not cure the default in the non-payment of maintenance, then an eviction proceeding can be immediately commenced. With regard to holdover proceedings, if the matter is not cured within the requisite period of time, a second notice is sent advising the shareholder their proprietary lease is now terminated and that after a period of time, an eviction proceeding will be brought for possession of the apartment.

The next step in the landlord/tenant process is the preparation of a "Notice of Petition" (which is much like a summons) and a Petition (which is like a complaint). The Notice of Petition sets forth the names of the parties who are involved in the litigation and when and where the shareholder must respond. The Petition, on the other hand, sets forth the allegations of the co-op as to why they are entitled to the relief sought.

Observe Proper Procedures

Since summary proceedings are a creature of statute, strict compliance with the regulatory scheme must be followed. Often, what appear to be technical irregularities cause the dismissal of a case. Courts are becoming more reasonable with regard to these issues, but tenacious tenants and their attorneys can delay and frustrate a co-op if there is any sloppiness in the papers. Therefore, it is imperative that the party bringing the action on behalf of the co-op have a certified deed for the property, all the requisite information with regard to the managing agent and the multiple dwelling registration number, and, of course, an accurate copy of the shareholder’s proprietary lease. With this information in hand, the attorney should be able to properly draft the appropriate documents necessary to commence the action.

The co-op must remember if there was financing for the purchase of the apartment, there should be a "Recognition Agreement" on file where it is the co-op’s obligation to notify the shareholder’s lender of any default in the shareholder’s obligations to the co-op.

After the action is commenced, the shareholder then has a period of time within which to answer (put in a defense). If a shareholder does not answer within five days after service of a non-payment proceeding, the co-op would be entitled to obtain a default judgment and obtain an "Order of Eviction" from the courts through the City Marshal, giving the co-op possession of the apartment.

If the shareholder does not answer in a holdover proceeding, there is no automatic default, but the co-op would have to take an inquest, that is, prove to the judge its right to the relief sought, which is, once again, possession of the apartment. If the shareholder answers within five days in a non-payment, or on the return date in a holdover proceeding, a trial will be required.

Streamlining the Process?

About two-and-a-half years ago, the Administrative Judge of the City of New York, under the auspices of the Chief Judge of the State of New York Judith Kay, issued new housing court directives in an attempt to streamline and facilitate the landlord-tenant process. The structure was realigned, so that once a case was filed, it would be immediately assigned to one of a number of judges called "Resolution Judges." Their purpose would be to meet with the litigants on the return date of the case to try to settle the matter. If it couldn’t be settled, the case would be immediately sent out for a trial to judges whose sole responsibility is to try cases. The purpose of the new directives was to expedite and streamline the system, which in many ways has occurred.

At the time of the realignment of the court, it was publicly announced that a new co-op and condo division would be established as part of the housing court to hear co-op and condo cases, since they were of a special nature. Nonetheless, the establishment of a co-op-/condo division does not exist the way it was intended.

Indeed, co-op and condo cases are of a special nature–some of them do not even belong in the housing court. Condos cannot bring lawsuits in the housing court when unit owners fail to pay common charges or breach the bylaws since there is no landlord-tenant relationship between the condo and unit owner. While there is such a relationship in a co-op through the proprietary lease, it is unclear whether it is even appropriate, or wise, to bring actions on behalf of co-ops in the housing court.

The housing court is geared up for individuals to act as their own attorneys which often makes cases more difficult to settle. If a co-op were to bring an action in the Supreme Court alleging a breach in the proprietary lease and seeking injunctive relief (such as enjoining the shareholder from having a pet, an appliance, or subletting), it becomes very difficult for the shareholder to defend him or herself in that forum, causing the shareholder to expend great deals of money for attorneys to defend them.

Closely related to this issue is the question of whether the co-op is actually granted title to an apartment if a holdover proceeding is successful in the housing court and the co-op obtains possession of the apartment. Some attorneys think the answer to be no: The co-op would still have to bring a separate proceeding in the Supreme Court to obtain title and/or the right to sell the apartment. It would probably be better for the co-op to go directly to the Supreme Court and obtain all the relief required in one proceeding.

Maintaining co-op non-payment proceedings in Landlord-Tenant Court is an effective and quick way to get the relief requested, because normally there are no issues of fact as to whether or not the shareholder owes the maintenance. To be quite candid, the housing court becomes a terrific collection agency for a co-op.

Housing court is probably the most overworked part of the entire New York State Court system. Housing court judges and their support personnel are some of the most dedicated individuals in the system. Despite some of the problems with delays and shortage of available courtrooms, the housing court is still a forum where justice can be obtained for all of the parties.

Mr. Brett is the founder of the Law Offices of Errol Brett in Manhattan.

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  • I live in Chicago, Il and have shares in coop. For the past year and a half, I have been trying to get this coop to correct a leaking pipe in my bathroom. The board as well as the manageing company refuse to correct this problem. Therefore, starting in January of 2008, I placed my assessment in escrow, notifing them first. In May of 2008, I was sent a 30 days notice about in default, and they are seeking full possession of my apartment. I was force to hire an attorney, to stop this action. It is now August of 2008, the coop has not made any steps in correcting this problem in my apartment. It is also noted that since I'm the occupant of this apartment, I cannot receive my attorney fees back. Is this true? Also, since the proprietary lease clearly states, that the coop is responsible for this leaking pipe in my bathroom, did they default in first?
  • The president of our co-op has not paid maintenance for over a year, she has finally agreed to a repayment schedule but hasn't adhered to it and her dues continue to rise. She oversaw a renovation project, and is demanding payment for having done so, despite the fact that no-one on the board has been paid for overseeing other renovations. One co-oper thinks we should pay her and get it over with (this co'oper is also behind on maintenance and the president didn't inform the board of this fact until it came out in a review). The rest of us pay our maintenance. Do you have advice as to how we should proceed?
  • unknown - if the leaking pipe is in your apartment (not behind the wall) then YOU are responsible for it, not the co-op. The co-op is only responsible for what is behind the walls, or for leaks that emanate from a pipe behind the wall.
  • Is the co-op responsible for replacement of the shareholder's floor if it is destroyed in a flood emanating from the building's drainage system (runs behind the wall and exits outside the building)?
  • Chicago - As noted, pipes within the apartment are typically your own responsibility. If it's within the wall -- or an indivisible pipe extending from within the wall -- then it's the coop's responsibility. If you're the prevailing party in NYC, then Real Property Law Sec. 234 *does* allow you to collect attorney's fees in most cases. I don't know about Chicago. Liza - Call a special meeting and boot out your president who is desperately in arrears. The Board acting alone may also have this power; check your By-Laws. And don't pay her a dime for overseeing a project! That's strictly in violation of most By-Laws. csmsmith - You can will your property to anyone you like, but under most Proprietary Leases, only a surviving spouse may become a shareholder and live in the apartment without going through the usual Board approval process. Floored - No, the coop pays only for fixing the building's drainage system and for replastering your walls. Damage to floors, rugs, wallpaper, and the like are covered by your own insurance. Check your Proprietary Lease for details.
  • is the co-op responsible for replacement of the shareholders patio/terrace doors if it is not working properly (ie off track and doesn't lock) and has cold draft coming into the apt? just like a window?
  • I own a co-op. A husband and wife live in a co-op that their son owns since 1982. I moved in in 1998. I knew her a long time. She started verbally abusing me abusing me. I called the police 5 times. She left me threatening messages. And wrote a letter to the board. She also went after the co-op decorator, the super, the management, the president of the board. I asked for her eviction. I also asked saw the District Attorney, asking for a restraining order. They wanted to go for mediation. I don't feel protected. How do we evict her? When is enough is enough. The board sent her son several letters.
  • Please, I am waiting for an answer. Please find me a solution, for this problem. I am trying to get an order of protection.
  • I was evicted from my co-op and now they are assessing me maintanance fees from the time I left until the time it was sold. Can they do that?
  • What happens when you default on your monthly fees and taken to court. Unable to pay the arrears but current on your monthly mortgage with the bank. Does the bank take back the unit or the Board?
  • What happens when you default on your monthly maintanence fees and don't pay mortgage
  • What does the building board of directors do in a situation that involves bedbug infestation in a shareholders apartment and the building has done and id offering to do everything to rid of the problem, refusing to there part and not allowing treatments to be done?
  • my ex owns his coop but has become diagnosed as mentally incompetent after a stroke. he is in arrears on maintenance and the co-op is seeking to evict him. he will be homeless. also if the co-op takes his apartment, will they be required to give him the proceeds of the sale? this is a terrible situation. he can no longer work.
  • I've been trng to sell my co-op for the past year purchased a single family home. the condo ass. is reject all the application from potential buyers and i can't afford to continue paying for maintenence fee that continue to increase by over $100 a month every year. What can I do to make the conde ass. stop rejecting application or is there a law when a co-op is vacant and up for sale they have to allow us to sell the apartment.
  • We are paying an unsually high co-op maintenance. We were told "unofficially" that ther was a mistake when the shares were alloted to our unit. Comparing the maintenance fees by sq. footage to other units on our floor, that seems to be the case. The board refuses to address the issue, saying it is too late. Do we have ant redress if in fact, our unit was assigned too many shares?
  • I own a coop apt in New york City.My ceiling has been damaged because or a water leak from the roof for over a year.While the building management and coop admit that it is their responsibility.I am not able to use the dining room and am exposed to dust.I pay (in a timely fashion) a hefty maintenance bill.I e mail the building management and president of the board with regularity.Sometimes I will receive a response.What are my recourses?I'm not even sure if it is a health hazard. thank you
  • Is it legal for a management company to allege violaitions that are non existent? Where are a shareholders rights who have never has any prior problems and who hold a paying job?
  • After 21 year, the board came to my coop apt and install an 18x18 in metal door in my wall. Behind my wall existed (I bought the apt without knowing this) the check valve for the sprinkle system. I could not sell the apt because the board converted it into a service apt. I have to quality of life. I don't have a mortgage. I was behind in my maint. They added about 25,000 in legal fees. Welfare wants to paid the judgement and they refused to take it. This is NYC. They want to evict me because they need the apt to service the building. I have a child so Welfare wants to pay but they refuse payment. Did they committed fraud by selling this apt which is a important part to maintaing the sprinkle system.
  • New York Coop Shareholder on Thursday, November 3, 2011 12:38 PM
    In beginning of 2011, we have been subject to an especially tough winter. Our building experienced a number of violent storms with extremely high winds, which are exacerbated due to the direct exposure to the Hudson River. Due to these conditions, the separation on my terrace was eventually blown out over the course of several of the aforementioned storms. My neighbor whom I I share the balcony was asked to pay half of the fee. The panels in question were replaced without any prior notice and without being consulted on the issue. The outsourced workers who entered my terrace and could have easily entered my home. But I am disputing because the Co-Op covered the cost of these repairs in the past. What actions can I take and am held liable to pay for this?
  • The apartment upstairs makes a lot of noise. I hear heavy walking and sometimes running. Also the pipes in the bathroom above are very loud and I can hear the water running when they turn on the faucet. do I have any options?
  • unknown user sounds so ridiculous and I bet this person lives in my building.
  • My coop's management sent me a bill for $2600 after almost 9 months that they claim they consulted a lawyer for an issue I was dealing with and had my own atty. I had a guest who we were led to believe was be trying to establish 30 days. (Or she could have been trying to get access in the apartment legally after I denied her return?) She got a court order to access the apt which she used AFTER i already brought her belongings to her. The doormen and the management dealt with her behind my back and she gave them personal emails from me. No one from the board or management approached me for my side of the story. She had never paid me a dime and owed me money even. She wanted to change our arrangement so that she could crash all week instead a few days when she was late at the office and didn't want to commute to where she stayed while in NY (resident of California). The point is she may been trying to say she stayed at my place consistently and the management believed her without the facts. We have a sign-in sheet at the front desk for guests which shows she stayed only here and there. My board members and management do not like me b/c I question things in the building. One board member has it on her mortgage brokerage company webpage that she is "vice president" of our board. No one on the board has approached me regarding my situation. It is not in our board minutes yet I was later informed that the board discussed this matter. The board has had most of the same board members for over 6-8 years and they put people on the board who get to stay on without an election! I think of them like bad neighbors b/c they get away with major offenses!! The management ignores any complaints if they involve board members. What are my rights? I have gotten MAJOR feedback and support on this issue. I am pitching an article to be written with the new developments and all the ppl who came fwd with similar stories! I am aware of some options but want more! 1) Can management hire a legal firm without telling me? Can they use excessively and expect me to pay? One day the law firm claimed they worked 4.10 hours for $1,192.50. There was nothing to do b/c the houseguest was already gone! I had a lawyer, if my past guest was calling they should have had my lawyer deal with her! 2) Is it a Break of Confidentiality that my doormen talked to this guest and answered questions like if they saw me and what I carried in my hand. The super and the doormen felt intimidated when she called the police. The police claim the super used his key to let her in after my lock change. The super denies. 3) Is it a Breach of Contract for the Management to go behind my back and hire a law firm without notice? And can they send a bill almost nine months later?! 4) Should I contact the BBB or grieve the attorney for operating without contacting me for my due process?! Thank you! Any help is appreciated!!
  • I live in a Co-Op in Westchester County,N.Y. The problem I'am having is with the tenant who lives above my wife and I. This is been going on for 3 years.This tenant is constantly making nosie along wtih his dog barking at all hours of the day and night. I called the management office numerous times along with writting letters to them and to the president of the Co-Op Board to no avail. My question is, Do I have the legal right to stop paying my maintenance fee.? Thank you for your time and help.
  • @Vinnie--I'm not a lawyer, but I've heard that you can put your money in a escrow account, this way you are not delinquent on your payments, but the co-op doesn't receive your money until they resolve the issue. I'd consult a lawyer to see if this is an option. The Westchester County Bar Association can refer you to a lawyer, who charges a nominal fee for a 1/2 consult.
  • coop placed a $1715.00 legal arrears on my maintenance statement. they have never sent or served me papers or told me what the charges were for. Do I have to pay or is there a recourse to this action. They have deducted money from my rent charges and are noe telling me that I have late fees in my statement.
  • Sarine Nieuwenhuis on Friday, March 30, 2012 1:29 PM
    I am in a similar situation. My amount is lower but it involves the first amendment. I created a te a blog and mentioned the name of the President of the board. Without warning he contacted a lawyer and put the bill on my maintenance and now it accumul;ates late charges. My only satisfaction is that after 18 years on the board, the President has just resigned. Now I am working on getting rid of the charges. I feel it is an abuse of power.
  • I'm on disability, husband was out of work since Jan. 2012 due to illness. I was unable to pay the total amount on a 3 day notice. my check was returned. Total amt. with legal fees were 6300.00, I sent 3500.00 which was returned. I have just received a notice of petition. what can I do to prevent eviction.
  • My mother died recently. If her coop was left to all four of us (her adult children) 1) WHO is responsible to paying the maintenance? 2) Can we take turns paying? Will they accept a check from any of us? 3) WHO is the owner? 4) Does that person have to be approved by the Board, or just keep paying the maintenance? 5), For how long can we visit and stay at the apt? I've heard no one can stay for more than 30 days if the owner is not in residence. Can you clarify all of these questions for me? It's an immediate concern. Thank you very much.. Great forum. Verry informative.
  • Do you have any recourse in attending a coop board meeting to defend yourself in allegations against you?
  • I am on the board of a co op with a no dog rule in place. A new resident who is now a realtor is attempting to get the dog rule reinstated, claiming that the apartment will sell for more money, and that a dog will bring the community closer. While I love dogs, we are a very small co op in tight quarters and I believe the owners of the dogs will not obey the rules of keeping the dogs quiet or cleaning up after them. My next meeting is in a week and I would like to get more information on the reasons why we can not reinstate the dogs back into the community. Any advise will be greatly appreciated.
  • I am a shareholder and owe I 35,000 over a ten years can I just sign over my shares to the coop and leave or I have to pay what I owe and loose my shares if they im taken to housing court
  • I have been late on my coop maintenance payments several times in the past couple years. I have paid several months at the same time. I would refer to the amount due on my maintenance statement and pay it. We purchased a second apartment recently in order to combine the units. i went to pay the maintenance and noticed the bill was extremely high. I asked for a statement. The statement said i was being charged $300 per unit per month anytime the maintenance was late. I had incurred late fees for late fees as well. I checked all my bills from the managing agent. No late fees are indicated on any statement. It includes maintenance, electiric, professional fees (an engineer), assessments, star tax - essentially everything except these late fees. I think the late fees are very high $300 per month per unit, late fees should be included on statements, and i shouldn't be charged late fees for unpaid late fees - especially if i didn't even know i was incurring them. Should i pursue this? How? and is it a bad idea since i am in the middle of construction to combine units to stir the pot now (wait until after and just pay for now)?
  • I am a current shareholder in a Westchester County Co-op. For the last three years the "supplies" expense on our annual fianacial statement has been very very high for a 60 unit buiding. I have questioned this matter at the annual meeing and my request was literally dismissed stating that prices go up. I have requested to view a detailed general ledger report for just this expense so that can see just what it is that we are purchasing. My question was taken to our attorney "FOR advice". I was then notified that I had no riht to see that information. I have been employed Managing agent firms as an accounting professional and I know how to read a general ledger report and I know that a right to this information but the board refuses. What can I do?
  • My Husband is in the military. We could not afford to pay for our co-op and a home at our new duty station. Can the management company sue us for non- payment since we did not sign their new proprietary lease?
  • I own a co op in the Brooklyn area this co op is vacant for almost 3 years but pay my maintenance on time the apartment went in contract the buyer was approved the apartment is in contract for over 6 months then I got a bill from the board for subletting fees which was never sublet can the board do this to a shareholder I submit all proof of residency what that affect my buyer I need to sell what should I do, Do I have to pay this money for something I didn't do what can I do I feel it is an abuse of power
  • How do I get the coop board or managment co to stop a new owner from making noise in the apartmen above us?
  • If my. Mom died could i take over her co-op even though im not on any paperwork
  • @unknown, the building documents would probably provide that the Board cannot unreasonably withhold your assumption or the transfer of the shares, however, if you cannot afford to live in the apartment based on the financial guidelines of the building, you'd probably be forced to sell and would be turned down just as any other applicant would be.
  • what is the answer to Vinnie's question--Is there a right to withhold maintenance charges because of noise complaints ignored by management and cooperative board? I have a similar problem for 3 years.
  • My mother died in February 2011, having been a coop resident for 40 years. Her apartment was vacated in April. My sister and I, as the survivors gave proper notice through a lawyer that we were the heirs, entitled to the proceeds of the sale back to the coop board. Proceeds were promised for 90 days no longer than 120 days after the apartment was vacated, equivalent to the end of August. Indeed, by August, the apartment had been sold, and occupied. We have been promised the check since September 10th, repeatedly, but it has not arrived. Is there any redress to force receipt of our money, which is unjustly been held onto by the co-op?
  • The shareholder above me lives in CA but has subletted her apt.. Her tenants caused a leak in my apt. because they left on vacation & didn't leave any heating units on and the coils broke. Iwant the shareholders' insurance to pay for personal property damage (co op repairs structure) but not put in a claim on my policy. Finally, the managing agent wants to see a copy of my policy? Am I obligated to send it ?
  • Need help I have a co op in Illinois. What are I'll statue in regards to with rusted pipes to the radiator g Has caused tile flooring to rust and come up. Off the floor. Also rusted water marks are a,LSO appearing under the paint on the walls of this same bathroom. Also seeing rusted water sipping from under toilet. Running rusted water from bathroom tub and shower different bathroom and a third bathroom. Does co-op has my lancdlord has responsibility?
  • I am being sued for 250K for a coop in Queens I lived in since 1983. The coop board says I own half the shares, but the person suing me wants all of them. I no longer live there. I have nothing to prove either he or I own it except the Board. How do I avoid court? he is suing the Board too.
  • We want to install an a motorized awning on our terrace and the board has refused permission based on it might cause leaks and it may fall down
  • I have a couple renting my unit and my Co-Op board charges me the same amount for two parking spaces, but gives me only one reserved space and wants my tenants to hunt for an available vacant space to park their other car. Is it legal for the board to do so? I have not defaulted on any of my payments and all my efforts to deal with this issue with the management company, the board and the co-op attorney has not brought any results. What legal action can I take?
  • I have a coop in Queens and am being told by the managment company that my window grills will be removed without my knowledge. I live on the first floor on top of the garage which provides easy access to invaders. They told me the board approved this decision but they did not notify my or other shareholders on the first floor. How can they do this? They claim that they are not liable for our safety? I have written a letter to the board which the management company fails to forward to the board, and they tell me they cannot give me their info? How do I go about meeting witht the board members if i dont have their contact? This managment company seems to be taking over without any consideration for the shareholders.
  • i own a co-op which my son lives in by virtue of the fact that he grew up in that apt. 2 years ago he married and they are in the process of separating. this co-op does not allow renting, it is owner occupied only. i want this woman to leave my apartment. how do i go about that?
  • My co op board of directors has been serving for more than 10 years. He has brought and made on apt for his friend and know we have two supers apartments for free my coop is a small building of 109 unit. He also hire a management company and made him an office he also has spread rumors about residents. whom to complaint to? When the management is graceful for there office and employment .The majority of our co op are Asian descent and the board of directors are the same race leaving the minority to fence for them self.
  • my coop board is doing needed alterations on one side of building they are moving people out of there parking spaces. to make up for this they are turning my side of building which is grass into a temp parking lot. I am on the 1st floor and have a beautiful water view my coop is also on the market and now I will have a parking lot view and headlights in my windows for 8 months. is there anything I can do
  • I live in a co-op in yonkers, n.y...about 8mo. ago a neighbor (not very well liked in the co-op area for being a trouble maker ) reported me for feeding a cat in my yard. I was guilty then and after i received a nasty threatening letter from the co-op manager I stopped.meanwhile everyone else in the area are feeding a cat. nothing was said to them. now this neighbor reported me again for the same reason, which this time I am innocent.the co-op manager is threatening me with fines and eviction just on this old ladies word. how do I handle this ?
  • I have owned my apt for 7 years now. we bought a house this past year.I Have been trying to see my co-op for the past year and both buyers have been denied by the board. I can no longer afford to pay it. What are the ramifications in case of stop payment. Can I just foreclose on the apt and let the bank/ or board take it back.???.... what can I do???..... Can the board sue me and come after my house? I'm in a impossible situation and I have no idea what to do.... Please HELP ME???......
  • My parents moved into my co-op temporarily 2 years ago. At the time the management company required them to pay a move in fee and that's it. In September, they decided to start assessing fines for them living there dated back from April. They are also telling them that they have to leave.Can they asses fines in arrears without any notification? How long is a reasonable amount of time to allow them to find another place to stay. They are also assessing penalty on top of penalty. Is this legal?
  • i live in a coop in yonkers ny, i have had a dog in my possession for over 4 months because my wife needs a companion for the time that i am not home, from a bad experience she had being robbed at gun point, now because i am the supers son, one of the nosey neighbors who has nothing better to do with her time called up the board and said that i am walking a dog, the coop board then held there meeting and decided to bring it to there lawyer and proceed with legal action, now keep in mind this board has what everyone in the complex likes to call selective enforcement, there are numerous dog owners over 20-30 that they have done absolutely nothing about!, i feel like im being discriminated against and they are not even depositing my maintenance checks instead they are sending them back to me. i would like to know what i should do about this and how to proceed. i would like to also note about 80% of the owners have some sort of pets from dogs to cats to birds to iguanas, now my poor little harmless dog that causes no trouble and does not poop or pee outside and is house trained and does not bark at all she does is keep my wife company when im not around. we proceeded to send a letter from our lawyer in regaurds to the 3 month pet law westchester county has, and now its been about a month and half have not heard anything back from there lawyer. but they did send my check back to me certified mail, should i keep sending payment as normal but use certified mail when mailing it them to have a receipt that they recieved it and chose not to cash it? any help on this matter would be greatly appreciated thank you.
  • I live in a Mitchellama, which is funded by state/federal and DHCR. My question to you, is can management utilize the equity you have in this apartment, to resolve outstanding issues. Do they need to notify you that you are being investiagated and What role/rights does the NY State housing department play in this, since they subsidize the carrying charges. Also, the security staff, porters and tenants in the building are also stalking me everywhere I go, and even attempting to gain access to information on my phone, as a form of intimidation to force me to leave. Please advise if this is feasible in NY and what recourse do I have. Thank you.
  • Ilive in a CO-OP in Michigan, the CO-OP used to be with Hud now that the morgage is paid off, were supposed to have a vote (by the Members) if we wanted to go Marketet rate, condo, or stay the same as we were. It has been over 6 months and have not had the vote for the members, when asking about when are we going to have the vote, we are told that they ( the board) is taking there time and a vote will come up in about a year. I and other members think they are trying to pull the wool over our eyes in holding up the vote,( taking away our vote) and then the board has allready voted them selves, is this legal? What can we do as members to get our vote back from this board? Also is it a practice for a board member to act as security and drive around our co-op looking for something to write up on a member? Please need a reply or tell me who to get in contact with here in Michigan. Thank You
  • My husband and I own a coop in queens. The rule book specifically states that the second floor apt. must have 80% of each room carpeted and padded. Now we just go new tenants moving in above us. When they walk around up there they are always very noisy. And they are up until 3 am making noise and dropping heavy things on the floor right over our heads. I tried talking to management which did nothing. Is there anything I can do or anyone else besides management I can talk to, to get these new tenants to obey the rules? They also take people's parking in the lots whenever they want.
  • my apt was flooded 4 times w/sewage,kitchen,bathtub pipes bursting and as a result,molds are eveywhere in my apt.,the coop board refused to do mold remediation except for the kitchen w/ the sewage (x4),bathtub and kitchen pipes burst and was heavily infested.i refused to pay maintenance until the mold was remediated .the coop went to court to evict me,it was dismissed went to civil court 3 x and the court ruled in my favor but the coop refuses to the mold remediation as ordered,now they repaired my apt. am i obligated to moved back into my apt when i'm allergic to mold ,continue to withhold the maintenance fee until the mold is remadiated and cleared?
  • I live in coop apt in NYC and have a debt of maintenance $4,000. I just got three days to evict notice unless I pay the debt. I am wondering why the coop doesn't use my maintenance escrow of $18,000 instead of evicting me..? Is that possible to do so??
  • I have written several complaint letters to the board and the managing agent regarding a noisy neighbor. They did send a letter to the shareholders about a year ago, but the problem persists, and although I continue to write letters, nothing is being done. What is my recourse? Do I file against the board for not acting on my behalf? Thank you in advance for your response to this. It really affects quality of life....
  • My co-op board and property management company have failed to correct a roof leak which filters to my top floor apartment for 8 months. I believe the failure to be the result of low cost repair/patchwork attempts rather than comprehensive resolution. This has resulted in sever inconvenience and thus peaceful enjoyment of my apartment. What can I do?
  • I am a shareholder of co-op. The co-op's bylaws stated only shareholder and their immediately family members can live in this co-op. They permit my live-in boyfriend. My boyfriend has minor mental illness and he abuses sleeping pills and alcohol. Doctor recommends to have a live-in home attendant to take care of him. But the Board of Director gives me troubles for the home attendant to live at the co-op unit giving the reason that he is not a direct family member. But I see other older owners' home attendants are allowed to live in the building. Does the co-op has right to evict my boyfriend and the home attendant? My boyfriend is not a shareholder of the co-op. Thank you.
  • What is required of a coop board if an owner against the process within the proprietary lease and without either telling the managing agent or Board and, consequently, with no recognition agreement, closes a mortgage on their shares to their coop apartment. Must The Board act to terminate the "unrecognized due to no recognition agreement" mortgage or ask the owner to go through the required process and, if approved, have a new closing dated at new closing date.
  • Charges with No Month or Year. My co-op's new building management has accused me of non-payment, but never identifies the month and year or provides alternative substantiating documentation. Late charges have been added, because many checks clear ranging between 8 - 24 days; April 2020 cleared 50+ days. The amount or calculation of late charges has never been published to the co-op. Again, no month and year identifies these late charges. Despite denying these charges numerous times and requesting the respective month and year in writing, there has been no correction and no response. Each payment, posted checks or bank online service, I memo “Excludes Disputed Amounts”. In statements nor correspondence, building management does not acknowledge the disputation. Building management made two major snafus on my monthly maintenance statements. They billed me 15 months, 6 months retroactively, ($1,575) for a storage bin I never used. For 2 years they increased my debt by $50 monthly without identifying why. When they corrected the former, the monthly statement was comprised of fictitious amounts and dates exacerbated by the incorrect payment allocation of my real estate abatement. 2 weeks prior I was sent its internal systems report also filled with fictitious dates and no accompanying explanation. Correspondence, statements nor other reports referred to the disputed debt without month and year tagged or any other substantiation for these charges. Nor was there a response to the various errors by building management prohibiting my access to the storage bin. Ironically, the following month building management emailed copying the co-op board requesting payment of $4,000 in past due debt. The greater irony is that its composition is the disputed amounts and the current month due which my bank online service had mailed 9 days beforehand. The greatest irony was that upon request for detail, no month & year dates were provided and the detail included a disputed debt I paid erroneously because the monthly maintenance statements are so confusing. Am I at risk of possible eviction or other action because building management ignores my dispute? Am I protected and what can I do to make the building management correct?