As the NY State Eviction Moratorium comes to a close on January 15th, NYC is launching a campaign to inform tenants about their rights and connect them to critical resources. Most importantly, we want every New Yorker to know three things:
For up-to-date information on evictions, please visit the Mayor's Office to Protect Tenants (MOPT)'s webpage or Housing Court Answers. For more information about how eviction protections might apply to you, contact the City's Tenant Helpline by calling 311 and saying "Tenant Helpline."
Visit the NYC Tenant Resource Portal, the City’s first-ever online resource to help residential renters access free resources from the City to help prevent evictions.
You can learn about the facts and resources available to you in the Mayor's Office to Protect Tenants (MOPT) Eviction Prevention Brochure, which was created in partnership with HPD, NYCHA, HDC, HRA, and the office of Civil Justice.
New York State Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP)
ERAP will provide significant economic relief to help low and moderate-income households at risk of experience homelessness or housing instability by providing rental arrears, temporary rental assistance and utility arrears assistance. We urge all New Yorkers in need of rent relief to apply for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) through the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) web portal, as a pending application will provide temporary protection from eviction.
You may be able to get help if you cannot pay your bills because you lost your job, you are getting less pay from your job, or you had another emergency like an unexpected medical situation. This help is called “Emergency Assistance” or a “One Shot Deal.”
Emergency Assistance can help you if:
You can apply for Emergency Assistance online using ACCESSHRA or by visiting your nearest HRA Job Center. For more information, call the HRA Infoline at 718-557-1399.
Households on the brink of homelessness can access an extensive network of neighborhood- based services through Homebase, to help you develop a personalized plan to overcome an immediate housing crisis and achieve housing stability.
If you or someone you know is experiencing a household crisis, call 311 to locate your nearest Homebase office.
The only legal way to evict a nonpaying tenant is through a nonpayment eviction proceeding in Housing Court. Building owners must notify the tenant that rent is late, what the balance is, and that, if not paid, the tenant will be evicted. Three days after notice is given or oral demand for the rent is made, the owner may file a nonpayment proceeding in Housing Court and serve papers on the tenant. The tenant must answer the petition in person at the Housing Court Clerk’s office. The Clerk will then provide a court date to the tenant. On the court date, the tenant has an opportunity to present his or her defense to a Housing Court Judge. It is advisable for a tenant to consult an attorney whenever eviction proceedings are concerned. Owners must obtain a judgment of possession and “warrant” directing a city marshal to evict the tenant. Tenants may have a defense to a claim for rent in a building which has been illegally altered and/or for which there is no current Certificate of Occupancy indicating that the rented space can be legally occupied.
An owner may commence a summary proceeding for possession of an apartment for a breach of the lease. If a tenant’s lease contains a provision allowing for termination for committing a “nuisance,” an owner may undertake eviction proceedings for objectionable conduct. A “nuisance” is generally considered persistent and egregious conduct that threatens the health, safety or comfort of neighboring tenants. To evict, owners must provide evidence proving that the tenant’s behavior meets this standard. The landlord must serve a preliminary notice which terminates the lease prior to commencement of the proceeding. The owner may also commence holdover proceedings for other reasons such as illegal sublet, non-primary residence, illegal use, or expiration of lease where no renewal is mandated by law.
New York City renters, you have rights!
Free legal advice and counsel is available for New York City residential renters. To access these services, please call 311 and ask for the "Tenant Helpline", visit the Mayor's Office to Protect Tenants' Information and Resources for NYC Tenants Impacted by COVID-19 webpage, or fill out their Contact Us form.
Seniors who have received a Notice of Eviction or a written notice from their landlord can get eviction prevention assistance and legal referrals. The City also provides eviction assistance for persons over the age of 60 who are mentally or physically impaired. For help, call 311.
The Housing Court Answers (HCA) also has a hotline at 212-962-4795 if you need help paying back rent. Call if you have a case in Housing Court and a good reason for falling behind in your rent such as a death in the family, serious illness, loss of job, or reduction in hours at work, if your income is now high enough that you can pay your future rent, and the amount of arrears is “manageable.” HCA does not provide direct financial help, but refers callers to charities and provides information about NYC Human Resources Administrations rules for assistance. Staff and volunteers at information tables at all Housing Courts answer questions about court procedures and forms. They can also provide referrals to legal services providers and other eviction prevention organizations, resources, and agencies. Most staff members speak English and Spanish.