Does a landlord have the right to refuse to include my childrenon the lease even though they have been living in the apartment since I rented it?

UPDATED: Jul 14, 2010

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Does a landlord have the right to refuse to include my childrenon the lease even though they have been living in the apartment since I rented it?

I have been living in this apartment for 20 years. I want him to include my youngest son in the lease because he is still attending college and I am getting ready to retire for medical reasons and he will be assuming some of the bills to help out. I just got a letter from the landlord saying he would not include him in the lease and even states that “we discussed the matter with the city officials”, which is not true. I don’t even know who “the city officials” are. What rights do we have under tenant laws for me and my son to be on the lease. He always refuses and only writes my name on it.

Asked on July 14, 2010 under Real Estate Law, New York


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Is the apartment subject to Rent Control of Rent Stabilization laws in New York? If the answer is yes then you should make inquiry in to your situation through the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal at (718) 739-6400 or (212) 961-8930. 

There are different regulations that apply to each of them.  They will be able to read your lease and to tell you your rights under the law.  What constitutes a "family member" and living in the apartment is defined under the law and through case law. 

If, however, your apartment falls under neither of these laws the landlord can refuse to add your son to the lease.  Seek help from the experts in the matter.  Good luck. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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