What can I do about a wrongful eviction notice?

I withheld rent for untended repairs, went through the eviction process, negotiated with the landlord to drop eviction with the payment of judgment, and then followed through with said payments. The last payment was made on 6/29, at which time I received verbal confirmation from the landlord’s accounts receivable clerk that I had no further debt and that my next payment in the amount of regular rent ($790) would be due on 8/1. On 7/15 maintenance spray-painted my motorcycle in my parking lot while painting parking space lines. I have attempted to obtain payment from landlord to cover the damages. On 7/25 I received a 3-day notice to pay or quit with an outstanding amount of $1300. Eviction is proceeding, how do I counter?

Asked on July 30, 2015 under Real Estate Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Do you owe the money? If you do, then even if you believe the landlord owes you money in turn (e.g. for spray painting your motorcycle), you have to pay it--that's how you avoid eviction. You then could sue your landlord in small claims court to recover any amounts he owes you.

If you feel that you don't owe the money--e.g. you have paid all rent and all amounts due under the agreement--then bring proof of payment with you when you appear for court in this matter; if you can prove payment, the landlord would not be able to evict for nonpayment.


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