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Mayor De Blasio protects tenants

Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a package of Covid-19 relief bills into law, including one that temporarily bars landlords from going after restaurant and store owners’ personal assets.

  • Dig Deeper: The law suspends the enforcement of personal liability provisions in commercial leases or rental agreements for a default that occurs between March 7 and Sept. 30. Attempting to enforce such provisions constitutes harassment under the measure, The Real Deal reported.
  • Worth Noting: In addition to the personal liability measure, the mayor signed a bill that expands the definition of residential and commercial tenant harassment to include threats based on the tenant’s status as a Covid-19 affected person, essential employee, or recipient of a rental concession or forbearance.
  • There will be lawyers: Opponents point out that the city overstepping its authority by interfering with private contracts. Attorneys have noted that personal liability provisions are often part of separate guaranties signed by the tenant, not baked into lease agreements as the council bill implies. [TRD]

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