Carolyn Z. Rualo is a Partner in the firm’s Landlord-Tenant and Rent Regulatory Due Diligence and Transactional Risk Assessment of Multi-Family Dwellings Groups. She represents a wide spectrum of New York City landowners from beginning property investors of small to mid-size multiple dwellings to seasoned property owners of hundreds of residential buildings throughout the City of New York. Her expertise in helping both her property owner clients and tenant clients in understanding the complex rent regulations and laws that govern their buildings allows her to see not only her strongest case, but her adversaries’ anticipated positions. She can thus frame a response even before the other side has thought what to answer.
She represents both commercial and residential landlords and tenants before the state courts of New York, the New York City Civil Courts, Homes and Community Renewal of the State of New York (HCR), formerly the Division of Housing and Community Renewal of the State of New York, and the Certificate of No Harassment Unit of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) of the City of New York. She specializes in investigating and uncovering rent regulatory non-compliance issues that can subject current and potential building owners to hundreds of thousands of dollars in future liability for rent overcharge exposure and building wide permanent rent reductions. Similarly, she successfully secures the return of overpaid rent and buyouts for her tenant clients. Buyers of multiple dwellings have relied on her and her team to review up to hundreds of units in multi-property portfolios, within narrow due diligence periods, and advise on issues that warrant special negotiations to ensure the value of their investment. Carolyn Rualo is particularly sensitive to the tight time frames these investigations require. With over ten years experience of practice before the Housing Courts of the City of New York and the Supreme Court of the State of New York, she also prosecutes and defends clients in nonpayment proceedings, holdover proceedings, Housing Part (HP) proceedings and in cases to determine an apartment’s rent regulatory status, legal regulated rent and any rent overcharge liability, for individual parties and in defending class action lawsuits against building owners.
Carolyn Rualo’s clients authorize her to process applications and defend actions before the HCR, including applications for rent increases based on Major Capital Improvements (MCIs), rent reduction applications, rent overcharge complaints, modification of services application, Tenant Protection Unit investigations and applications that seek an administrative determination by the agency as to an apartment’s legal rent or regulatory status. She also routinely educates and assists property owners in complying with their obligations to annually register their buildings with HCR and in correcting any registration errors that may have occurred in the past, often under prior ownership. Carolyn Rualo is relentless in making sure that her clients fully understand their positions’ strengths and weaknesses
Carolyn Rualo is a leading attorney who has been recognized for her impressive accomplishments in real estate law. She has been named repeatedly as a Super Lawyers Rising Star and has also been featured as one of the Super Lawyers Top 50 Women Attorneys in the New York metropolitan area – one of only 18 real estate attorneys who made the list that year. Carolyn Rualo was recently named as one of New York Law Journal‘s “New York Trailblazers” for her innovative and unconventional approach in helping an owner avoid a City lien for three times the market cost for making emergency repairs. She was also recognized by the Chambers Women in Law Awards: USA 2018 as a nominee for the “Future Leader – Gender Diversity (Private Practice)” category, joining only four other women from across the nation.
Carolyn Rualo is admitted to practice law in New York and New Jersey. She is a graduate of Villanova University, College of Commerce & Finance, where she was a member of the Gamma Phi Honors Society. She then went on to earn her Juris Doctor from Brooklyn Law School before joining the firm in 2007. Carolyn Rualo is starting her 13th year at Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C.