News Story (New York)
June 11, 2015
Tags: Benefits of Legal Aid, Housing: Homelessness, Housing: Landlord-Tenant, Pro Se/Self-Help
Organizations mentioned/involved: Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A (BKA), South Brooklyn Legal Services, Legal Services Corporation (LSC)
When a landlord wants to avoid the expense of a buyout, or if a tenant refuses to accept one, more aggressive measures are required. Shekar Krishnan of Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A represents tenants in neighborhoods throughout the borough. “What we see a lot more now,” he says, “is landlords physically destroying buildings to force tenants out overnight. It’s the method of choice these days.”
Not all tactics for clearing rent-stabilized tenants are so unabashed and shocking as those of the Israel brothers. Some landlords choose more subtle, often litigious options. “Baseless eviction proceedings,” says Krishnan, “that’s usually where it starts.”
There are several roads to eviction proceedings: perhaps it’s one too many roommates; perhaps it’s suspicion of an illegal sublet. Landlords scan Airbnb for units in their buildings, and surveillance cameras are common. Even death can be used to prompt an eviction notice.