I’m a New York tenant and I don’t want to move out of my home. How can I avoid eviction? What are my New York tenant eviction rights?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

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If you receive a demand for overdue rent or a termination notice, it may be to your benefit to resolve matters before your landlord brings a lawsuit. Even if you prevail in court, your name may still appear in court records. This could adversely affect your ability to rent in the future because landlords have been known to look through court records when reviewing tenant applicants. You will know that a lawsuit has been filed when you are served with a petition and notice of petition and receive a postcard from the court in the mail. You will have a deadline within which to respond (answer) to the lawsuit.

For Nonpayment Cases: If you are a tenant and have received a demand from the landlord requesting overdue rent, you may simply pay the owed amount (however, your landlord may still be able to bring a holdover case). During court, the tenant may also request that the payment of rent not occur until after the landlord has made repairs on the apartment. The landlord may request that the payment of rent not be contingent on repairs in the following cases: where the tenant did not request the repairs be done until the nonpayment lawsuit was brought, if the tenant has denied the landlord access to make the repairs, or if the requested repairs are not violations of the Housing Maintenance Code. (See the New York’s Tenant’s Rights Guide.)

For Holdover Cases: A tenant without a lease (or whose lease has expired) may request to remain in their apartment for up to six months so long as they continue paying rent during that time. Whether or not a judge grants this request depends on the circumstances. At this point in the proceedings, you may wish to seek the advice of an experienced New York evictions lawyer, either to give you sound advice or to help you defend against the eviction.

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