Must a tenant disclose a prior criminal record history to a landlord?

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Must a tenant disclose a prior criminal record history to a landlord?

I recently discovered that a guy who I rented out one of my extra bedrooms to with a 1 year lease, is in fact, a convicted felon. He was charged with mail fraud 6 years ago for trying to steal over a $1,000,000. By law, was he supposed to inform me beforehand even though I didn’t ask him about any prior criminal activity verbally or by written application (much like a convicted sex offender is required to do)?

Asked on December 15, 2011 under Real Estate Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

No, unfortunately there is no general requirement that a non-sex offender notify a landlord of his/her criminal record. This is why many landlords will run a criminal background check on their prospective tenants--so they can discover if there was some criminal activity.


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