Elizabeth Apt. LLC, v Betty Eng and Steven Eng (2017)

This case concerned the attempted eviction of the respondents Betty and Steven Eng, by the housing company Elizabeth Apt LLC. This case had failed at first instance and then again on appeal, due to the petitioners’ inability to highlight the lack of relevant legal issues, as put forth within the respondents’ succession defense. Which can be viewed in greater detail, as per the New York City Rent and Eviction Regulations [9 NYCRR] § 2204.6[d][3][i].

The respondents’ succession defense follows due to the lifelong occupancy of both Betty and Steven Eng within the apartment, with their mother and father (the original tenants’.) Following the ill health of the respondents’ parents; which led to the appointment of a guardian for the respondents’ mother (and original tenant) in 2010, as per Article 81, this led to the mother’s tenancy rights being subsequently surrendered. Consequently, the respondents’ attempted to raise a non-primary residence action, which failed, due to the premature nature of the non- residence.

Whilst the petitioner had not disputed the respondents’ occupancy of the property, it was held that the petitioner had failed in their attempt to prove the respondent had lacked the right of succession over the apartment. This was due to the respondents’ subsequent occupancy of the apartment and relationship with the original tenants. The fact that the original tenant (the respondents’ mother) had surrendered her tenancy rights via her guardian, did not, in the eyes of rent control law deprive her children of their succession rights. This can be emphasized within the case of Matter of Herzog v Joy, 74 AD2d at 376.

By: Gurpreet Basra, Legal Intern at Bikram Singh Law, P.C.


Reena Rani

Reena Rani has wide range of legal experience, having worked with largest U.S.A. Municipal Health Care Organization as in house counsel for New York City Hospitals, the Bronx District Attorney’s Office and in house counsel at GEICO she brings her former prosecutorial and defense experience to her current clients.