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Court of Appeals rules on J-51

Credit: New York State Senate

The New York Court of Appeals has ruled in landlords’ favor that the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019 should not apply retroactively to cases involving J-51 rent overcharges. It also limits the rent used to calculate damages to four years prior to a complaint, TRD reported.

  • Why it matters: The ruling will likely prove very helpful to lawsuits challenging the statute in that “the majority noted the lack of balance in the new rent law, lack of legislative explanation and substantive injuries caused.” 
  • The backdrop: Tenants asked the court to apply the new rent law’s lower calculation method to cases pending when the new law was passed. Some sought to recover overcharges incurred as far back as the 2000s. The ruling unveiled Thursday rejected that request. In each of the four cases before the court, the jurists were divided four to three.

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