Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C.’s Jeffrey R. Metz Has More Real Estate Appellate Wins than Any Other Practicing Attorney in New York

By Jeffrey R. Metz

Jeffrey Metz has participated in many of the most important New York real estate decisions of this generation. Mr. Metz has prepared and argued over two hundred and fifty appeals, approximately one hundred and fifty of which have been officially reported. A review of twenty-five years of the Housing Court Reporter shows Bureau Chief Jeffrey R. Metz as one of the most frequently appearing and winning practitioners before New York’s appellate courts. In fact, an in-house study using a Westlaw search found that Jeffrey M. Metz has won more real estate appellate cases than any other practicing attorney. Besides having appeared before New York State Court of Appeals, the Appellate Division, First, Second and Third Departments, various Appellate Terms and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, State Supreme, Civil and Housing Courts, Mr. Metz’s appellate work has included preparation and prosecution of Article 78 proceedings relative to decisions of the Rent Regulatory Agencies and various Supreme Court declaratory judgment actions relating to landlord/tenant and/or real estate disputes in both residential and commercial contexts. Some of Mr. Metz’s most notable cases appear below:

  • East 51st Street Crane Collapse 106 A.D.3d 473 (1st Dept. 2013) Established that settlements of wrongful death action due to crane collapse should be unsealed for review by the public and other parties adversely affected by the collapse.
  • B & C Realty, Co. v. 129 Emmut LLC 106 A.D.3d 653 (1st Dept. 2013) Successfully defended owner of a building with potential zoning violations against purchaser who failed to close and lost a two million dollar down payment with finding that purchaser failed to demonstrate reasonable reliance necessary to sustain claims of fraudulent inducement, fraud and promissory estoppel.
  • Board of Managers of 184 Thompson Street Condominium v. 184 Thompson Street Owner LLC 106 A.D.3a 542 (1st Dept. 2013) Clarified the “total price” calculation in determining what a sponsor must contribute to a condominium’s reserve fund.
  • Stalker v. Steward Tenants Corp.  93 A.D.3d 550 (1st Dept. 2012) In a case of first impression, successfully argued to appellate court that sellers of a cooperative apartment could sue cooperative under the New York State Human Rights Law and the Federal Fair Housing Act for damages when cooperative refused to approve a sale of the unit to elderly buyers.
  • Fort Washington Holdings, LLC v. Abbott 36 Misc. 3d (App. T. 1st Dept. 2013) In a succession case, reversed trial court decision nullifying a jury’s verdict which held that for a non-traditional family member to succeed, claimed successor must prove both an emotional commitment interdependence and a financial commitment interdependence appellate term found that succession was not established.
  • Hartman v. Goldman 84 A.D. 3a 374 (2d Dept. 2011) In a case of first impression involving the 2008 amendment to Real Property Actions & Proceedings §543, successfully defended an adverse possession claim on the basis that de minimus non-structural encroachments are permissive and non-adverse.
  • 221-06 Merrick Blvd Associations, LLC v. Crescent Electric Acquisitions Corp. 79 A.D. 3d 896 (2d Dept. 2010) Reaffirmed that renewal lease option is ineffective if not given in a timely manner and found that equity should not intervene to excuse tenant’s tardiness in exercising option.
  • Lorne v. 50 Madison Ave, LLC 65 A.D.3d 879 (1st Dept. 2010) Successfully represented Board of Directors against challenge by shareholder of a unit who claimed that the Board breached its fiduciary duty to her by not permitting certain sponsor obligated repair work to be performed by the shareholder absent to shareholder executing an alteration agreement. Also reaffirmed that board member cannot be sued in individual capacity about the member committing an independent tort against the shareholder.
  • Sykes v. RFD Third Avenue 1. Associates, LLC 67 A.D.3d 162 (2010) Established that a course of action for negligent misrepresentation asserted against a mechanical engineering firm for rendering statements in an offering plan regarding the disputes of the heating and condition systems which proved to be untrue, did not lie because the owner was not a known party when the firm made the representation.
  • Nehmadi v. Davis 63 A.D. 3d 115 (2nd Dept. 2009) Reaffirmed that a time of the essence letter must detail the consequences of a failing to appear at the closing and hold that specific performance cause of action remains viable when a time of the essence letter is deficient.
  • Chan v. Chin 62 A.D. 3d 471 (1st Dept. 2009) Successfully represented owners from challenge by perspective purchaser to obtain valuable commercial property who several documents did not satisfy statue of frauds. Because documents never established a purchase price, there was no meeting of the minds.
  • Pacific Carlton Development Corp. v. 752 Pacific, LLC. 62 A.D.3d 677 (2nd Dept. 2009) Found that a cause of action for tortious interference with contraction relations brought against individual defendant could be based upon their actions on corporate officer.
  • Hooters of Manhattan, Ltd. v. 211 West 56 Associates 51 A.D.3d 410 (1st Dep’t 2008), Reaffirms the validity of exculpatory clauses in commercial leases as well as the validity of a provision which shifts the obligation from landlord to tenant to obtain insurance for direct and indirect loss of earnings.
  • Candida v. Salvation Army, Inc. 46 A.D.3d 294 (1st Dep’t 2007), Found that charitable institution which owned two buildings did not lose exemption from Rent Stabilization and was entitled to refuse to renew leases when it determined to sell the buildings to a for profit entity.
  • Pinehurst Const. Corp. v. Schlesinger 38 A.D.3d 474 (1st Dep’t 2007), In affirming judgment of possession based upon nuisance due to pounding of ceiling and screaming directed to tenant directly overhead, Appellate Division found that Notice of Termination was sufficiently detailed to allow tenant to prepare a defense even though it set forth no names of complainants or dates or specific instances of misconduct.
  • Novita LLC v. 307 West Restaurant Corp. 35 A.D.3d 234 (1st Dep’t 2006), Where tenant looked to avoid damages for removing a load-bearing wall by claiming that three-year statute of limitations for negligence was controlling and matter was therefore time-barred, successfully argued that six year statute of limitation applied because claim was for a breach of contract for property damages.
  • Shoprite Supermarkets, Inc. v. Yonkers Plaza Shopping, LLC 29 A.D.3d 564 (2d Dep’t 2006), First Appellate Division opinion to detail what constitutes a proper demand for rent and a proper notice to cure in a commercial setting.
  • Whaling Willie’s Roadhouse Grill Inc. v. Sea Gulls Partners, 17 A.D.3d 453 (2d Dep’t 2005), Successfully argued that court abused discretion by ordering commercial tenant, which alleged it had been partially actually evicted due to new building blocking certain parking areas it was entitled to under lease, to deposit the full amount of all past and future rent into court while case was pending.
  • Chang v. SDI Intern, Inc. 15 A.D.3d 520 (2d Dep’t 2005), Demonstrated to court that plaintiffs’ request for turn-over of corporation’s tax returns and other sensitive financial information was inappropriate and should be subject to protective order.
  • Classic Realty LLC v. DHCR 309 A.D.2d 205, TLC Luxury Decontrol 22 (2004), Demonstrated to Court of Appeals that in a luxury decontrol proceeding where tenant was found to be over-income and subject to deregulation that DHCR’s comment period could not be used to submit an amended tax return in order to bring the tenant’s income under the statutory threshold for deregulation.
  • Nobu Next Door LLC v. Fine Arts Housing Inc., 3 A.D.3d 335 (1st Dep’t), Where lease required tenant not to be in default at time of renewal of lease, and tenant made choice to defer maintenance to maintain an exhaust stack, demonstrated to Appellate Division that tenant was not entitled to Yellowstone and injunctive relief tolling period to exercise renewal option. Decision was subsequently appealed to Court of Appeals where order was affirmed. See 4 N.Y. 3d 839 (2005).
  • SRM Card Shop, Inc. v. 1740 Broadway Associates L.P., 2 A.D.3d 136, TLC Actual Partial Eviction 1, TLC Agents 1 (1st Dep’t 2003), Where evidence tended to show a partial actual eviction (relieving commercial tenant from paying rent for the remainder of a commercial lease) due to landlord’s destruction of a portion of the tenant’s storage space in exchange for other space, convinced Appellate Division that the tenant had acquiesced in the space substitution thereby saving landlord approximately one million dollars over the remaining term of the lease.
  • Domen Holding Co. v. Aranovich 302 A.D.2d 132 , TLC Nuisance 2, TLC Termination Notices 16 (2003), Submitted amicus curiae brief on behalf of the Rent Stabilization Association leading to holding that Notice of Termination was sufficiently detailed to support ejectment action sounding in nuisance.
  • Gulotta v. Ippolito 296 A.D.2d 380 (2d Dep’t 2002), Reaffirming that when proposed purchaser fails to obtain mortgage loan commitment in time specified in the contract, owner can rightfully exercise option to cancel the contract.
  • Sessler v. DHCR 282 A.D.2d 262 (1st Dep’t 2001), Affirmed that the 4 year rule applies to rent overcharge proceedings before DHCR.
  • East 145 Co. v. Benayoun 736 N.Y.S.2d 830 (Appt. T. 1st Dep’t 2001), Held that prosecution of a no-pet holdover proceeding after the tenant settled a negligence action brought against the landlord due to injuries sustained by the tenant’s son in the apartment was not retaliatory in nature.
  • Paganuzzi v. Primrose Mgmt. Co. 268 A.D.2d 213 (1st Dep’t 2000), Reaffirmed that when landlord brings an unsuccessful Article 78 proceeding to challenge a fair market rent appeal, tenant may not collect legal fees pursuant to RPL 234.
  • Eighteen Associates, LLC v. Nanjim Leasing Corp. 257 A.D.2d 559 (2d Dep’t 1999), Found that the absence of privity of contract presents no bar to a landlord obtaining use and occupancy from former sublessees of a commercial space. Subtenants claimed they had no liability because they were not parties to the lease between the owner and its tenant.
  • Avon Bard Co. v. Aquarian Foundation 260 A.D.2d 207 (1st Dep’t 1999), Absent a designated beneficiary clause, corporate tenant in a residential apartment is a non-primary resident and therefore unable to demand a renewal lease.
  • Rose Associates v. Lenox Hill Hospital 262 A.D.2d 68 (1st Dep’t 1999), Obtained more than two million dollars in use and occupancy arrears from holdover hospital tenant.
  • Graubard Mollen, et. Al. v. 600 Third Avenue Associates 252 A.D.2d 453 (1999), Seminal case detailing the scope and nature of Yellowstone Injunctive Relief found that deposit of rent into escrow as condition of obtaining Yellowstone relief did not relieve tenant from the obligation to pay interest on the rent arrears pursuant to lease. Tenant thus required to pay several hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest.
  • Nick v. DHCR 244 A.D.2d 299 (1st Dep’t 1997), Early luxury decontrol case which found that owner entitled to an order of deregulation upon tenant’s default and that luxury decontrol provisions of the Rent Stabilization Law do not violate due process or equal protection guarantees.
  • Graubard Mollen, et. Al. v. 600 Third Avenue Associates 234 A.D.2d 49 (1st Dep’t 1996), Held that monetary conditions for grant of Yellowstone injunction could be modified to grant a landlord greater relief upon a proper showing.
  • Holy Properties Ltd.,L.P. v. Kenneth Cole Productions, Inc. 208 A.D.2d 394, TLC Mitigation 1 (1995), Critical commercial decision continuing the New York rule that a landlord has no duty to mitigate its damages when a tenant leaves it premises prior to the expiration of its lease.
  • Cox v. J.D. Realty Associates 217 A.D.2d 179 (1st Dep’t 1995), Established that the Civil Court, rather than the Supreme Court, is the proper forum to resolve apartment succession disputes.
  • Baer v. Lipson 194 A.D.2d 787(2d Dep’t 1993), Tenant waived jurisdictional claim of lack of jurisdiction when, after judgment was entered against him on default, his attorney moved to vacate default but did not assert jurisdictional defense.
  • Briar Hill Apartments Co. v. Teperman 165 A.D.2d 519 (1st Dept’ 1991), Established criteria to determine non-primary residence issues.
  • 61 W. 62 Owners Corp. v. Harkness Apartment Owners Corp. 173 A.D.2d 372 (1st Dep’t 1991), Established that owner may recover possession if tenant fails to pay court ordered use and occupancy as condition to a Yellowstone injunction.
  • Ansonia Residents Ass’n v. DHCR Established that Major Capital Improvement Increases became a permanent part of a tenant’s base rent.
  • Sohn v. Calderon 162 A.D.2d 331(1991), Established areas where administrative agencies have exclusive jurisdiction.
  • Kumble v. Windsor Plaza Co. 128 A.D.2d 425 (1st Dep’t 1987), Established that attorney’s fees must be proven by means of an adversarial hearing.
  • 829 Seventh Avenue Co. v. Reider 111 A.D.2d 670, TLC Family 15 (1986), Expounded on the living with requirement for Rent Controlled Succession rights.
  • Sullivan v. Brevard Associates 101 A.D.2d 1036 (1985), Seminal case defining tenant that led to enactment of the succession status.
  • Vance v. Century Apartment Assocs. Established that sub-letter must demonstrate an intent to return.

Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C.