Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. Wins Declaratory Judgment, Permanent Injunction, and Judgment of Possession Against Nuisance Apartment Occupant Despite Ban on Evictions
Representing a residential landlord in a Supreme Court ejectment action, Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. was tasked with securing possession of an apartment; second, Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. was charged with protecting the safety and quiet enjoyment of the apartments of neighboring residents against an unauthorized nuisance occupant left over when the tenant of record vacated the apartment, but failed to remove the occupant.
The tenant of record of the free market apartment installed an occupant who (according to neighbors and building staff) terrorized the apartment complex, its residents, and staff by, among other things, routinely yelling at, harassing, following, threatening, videotaping, and taking pictures of residents and staff; kicking residents’ doors; physically assaulting a resident; throwing furniture, garbage, and food into the common areas of the building; and even hiring a locksmith on several occasions to replace public area locks in the complex without owner’s authorization.
With housing court at a standstill due to various COVID-19 related laws and procedural roadblocks, Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C., brought the case to the Supreme Court, asserting causes of action of, among others, declaratory judgment that the occupant has no rights or claim to the apartment, injunction enjoining the occupant from occupying or possessing the apartment, and ejectment seeking a writ of assistance to remove the occupant from the apartment.
Upon starting the action, Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. immediately moved by order to show cause for a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction enjoining the occupant from occupying the apartment. We argued that the occupant had no rights to the apartment, including, because he had no landlord-tenant relationship with the owner and that the safety of other residents was in immediate danger. The court awarded a temporary restraining order.
We then moved for final judgment on the causes of action for declaratory judgment, permanent injunction, and ejectment. We argued that the COVID-19 related statutory stay did not apply since the occupant never submitted a hardship declaration, and that even were the occupant to submit one, no stay was applicable due to the nuisance exception set forth in the COVID-19 Emergency Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2020 (“CEEFPA”).
The court granted our motion in its entirety (i) declaring that the occupant had no rights to the apartment, (ii) issuing a permanent injunction enjoining the occupant from using or possessing the apartment, and (iii) directing judgment of possession in favor of our client with the issuance of a writ of assistance to remove the occupant from the apartment.