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Adam Leitman Bailey P.C. Wins DHCR Proceeding Permitting Landlord to Decommission Rent Stabilized Tenant’s Fireplace

Representing a Manhattan landlord at the Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR), Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. obtained an order allowing the landlord to permanently decommission a residential rent-stabilized tenant’s fireplace in connection with the landlord’s construction of additional floors in the building. As a result of the landlord’s construction and the addition of several stories to the existing building, the residential tenants’ existing fireplaces became inoperable due to the inability to vent and extend the flues. Before Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C.’s retention, one tenant filed a DHCR reduction of services application concerning the fireplace, which DHCR granted and directed the landlord to restore the fireplace.

When the landlord did not restore the fireplace, the tenant commenced a DHCR non-compliance proceeding claiming that the landlord defaulted in restoring the fireplace service. Before retaining our firm, the landlord applied to DHCR to modify services to decommission the fireplace, but DHCR denied the application after the landlord inadvertently failed to respond to DHCR’s several requests for information. Once retained, we worked with the landlord to file a new application to discontinue the service and included a report from a New York State licensed architect demonstrating that the fireplace cannot be properly vented and operated in accordance with applicable laws. DHCR agreed to the tenant’s objections and granted the application to decommission the fireplace with a nominal monthly rent reduction in exchange for the termination of the service.

Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. then wrote to DHCR in the non-compliance proceeding and requested that DHCR close the non-compliance proceeding because the decommissioning order eliminated the landlord’s obligation to restore the fireplace. DHCR agreed and closed the proceeding. Finally, Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. worked with the landlord to immediately file a rent restoration application concerning the initial reduction of services and rent reduction order. The application is pending.

Vladimir Mironenko represented the landlord at DHCR

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