In many landlord-tenant disputes, eviction proceedings are the final resolution. As a tenant, an eviction on your court record can make it difficult to find another rental. Before your eviction case goes to court, consider your options to fight the charges. If the claims your landlord made are legitimate, you may need an affirmative defense.
Affirmative defense options allow you to fight the charges by providing the court with information or evidence not included in the original records.
The landlord made mistakes in the process
Certain steps are mandatory for eviction in New York. Tenants must receive a notice to cure the problem with a deadline to do so. If the tenant does not solve the problem, the landlord must serve a notice to quit with a clear deadline before filing eviction proceedings at the end of that period. Skipping any of these steps or handling the paperwork incorrectly (including misspellings or improper service) may lead to dismissal in court.
The landlord is retaliating
If you filed a complaint or withheld rent in accordance with property repair regulations before the eviction proceeding began, you may argue that the eviction is retaliation for exercising your legal tenancy rights, which the law prohibits.
You resolved the problem
If you resolve the problem in question before your court hearing, most courts will dismiss the eviction action. For example, if your landlord files eviction because you violated the pet policy and you rehome the pet before your court date, there is no further violation to warrant eviction.
Understand your rights and affirmative defense options to fight eviction and protect your family.