Legal Advice regarding Housing

If you believe you have been illegally locked out of your home by your landlord, the OCL may offer free legal services through our non-profit legal service providers to assist you in an “illegal lockout case” in housing court. Are you facing eviction in housing court or are you facing seizure in the Supreme Court? Are you threatened with eviction in NYCHA apartments or are you trying to sue for reparations? Do you need help with other housing problems? Are you homeless? You may be entitled to free legal assistance. If you are a member of a tenants` group or association or would like information on how to form a tenants` group or association, or if you are a board member or shareholder of HDFC coop, call the Housing Justice Unit`s advocacy helpline at 212-577-7988 Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. or Email The level of services offered varies from program to program. Some programs provide only full representation and believe that full representation is the most effective and accountable way to serve clients. To help more eligible tenants, programs may instead choose to offer less intensive services, such as legal advice or assistance with part of a case (unbundled legal services). Legal advice is free, available in any zip code, and available regardless of immigration status.

Safe and stable housing is essential for economic, educational and family stability. “Harassment” is any act or omission by a landlord or landlord`s representative that results or intends for a person legally entitled to live in a room or apartment to waive their room or apartment or their tenancy rights. In upstate New York, tenant harassment can be a felony or misdemeanor. In New York City, tenant harassment is also a violation of housing law, and tenants can sue their landlord in housing court if they are harassed. Implementing New York City`s Universal Access to Lawyers Program: Lessons for Other Jurisdictions, NYU Furman Center, December 2018 – In 2017, New York City enacted the nation`s first law providing legal representation to all income-eligible tenants facing eviction. NYU Furman Center researchers closely followed the launch of the UAC program and conducted numerous interviews with key stakeholders, including tenants, judges, legal services attorneys, landlord attorneys, tenant attorneys and organizers, and court staff. For OCJ legal advice on tenant housing, please call 311 and ask for the City`s Tenant Helpline. Communities interested in helping vulnerable tenants can fund organizations that provide free legal services to low-income tenants. Legal advice bodies can deal with a number of housing-related issues, but the prevention of evictions is often a major concern. Support can take the form of free representation, advice or support through a helpline or contact centre, as well as resource guides from legal protection organisations. In 2017, New York City committed to paying for legal representation in housing court for all tenants affected by eviction and whose incomes are below 200% of the poverty line.

In the context of growing concerns about eviction, a number of jurisdictions are considering funding expanded access to legal aid (i.e. An obligation to fund legal services) or the creation of a legal right to legal assistance. In 2017, New York City became the first city in the country to offer universal access to counseling for income-eligible tenants facing eviction (whose income is below 200% of the federal poverty line). Since New York`s universal access to lawyers program became law, other cities have passed similar laws, including Newark, Philadelphia, Santa Monica, San Francisco, and Boulder. Programs that create a right to a lawyer or provide access to a lawyer to a large number of tenants facing eviction will help level the playing field in eviction proceedings, where landlords are generally represented by lawyers because they can afford it and low-income tenants cannot. These programs can also result in savings for municipalities, such as preventing access to homeless shelters or other social services. However, programs like Universal Access to Counsel have high prices — in 2021, the Department of Human Services` budget for tenant rights services in New York City was $136 million. Legal advice programs typically serve low-income tenants and screen potential clients to determine their income and asset eligibility. While not all income tenants are eligible for counselling, programs may also select clients based on the difference legal representation makes in their case. Legal aid for vulnerable tenants is provided by legal aid agencies which, in some cases, are supported by local jurisdictions, among others. Free assistance in cases of discrimination in housing. Learn more: Fair Housing Project If you are a tenant and have questions about harassment by your landlord, repairs to your apartment or building, or your rights as a tenant, please call 311 and ask for the tenant helpline or visit the city`s online tenant resource portal for information and resources.

for tenants in New York. including free legal advice from the OCJ`s not-for-profit legal service providers. My apartment needs serious repairs and my landlord won`t do them, or I have other questions about my housing situation in New York State, a lender needs to take legal action in the Supreme Court and get a foreclosure order against a landlord who hasn`t paid the mortgage. The landlord is legally entitled to collect rents and enter into leases until the foreclosure ends in an auction when the building is sold to a new owner or retained by the lender. Philadelphia was the seventh city to offer legal representation in two zip codes to low-income tenants facing eviction. The City Attorney Entitlement Program was launched with funding from the Eviction Diversion Program implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic. The OCJ has partnered with Legal Services to provide tenants in New York City with free access to telephone legal advice and information. Here are some resources that can provide legal assistance with foreclosure, tenancy, home ownership, and other laws in California.

Under New York City`s Right to Attorneys Act (RTC), the DSS/HRA`s Bureau of Criminal Justice (OCJ) offers tenants facing eviction through a housing court administrative proceeding or NYCHA administrative proceeding access to free legal representation and advice from nonprofit legal advisory organizations in all five boroughs. The justice system can be overwhelming. Familiarize yourself with some legal terms and acronyms you may hear, such as appeal, adjournment, petition, jurisdiction, testimony, and affidavit. San Francisco, California passed a law in 2018 that ensures that all residential tenants facing eviction are entitled to a full legal defense. The Tenants` Right to Counsel (TRC) program established by this Act funds legal representation for tenants facing eviction, rent assistance for eligible tenants, coordination of mandatory settlement conferences, and other services and activities. OCJ`s helpline is available Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to provide legal advice and telephone information to New York tenants who need help with legal questions regarding rent, lease, or other landlord-tenant matters.

The quickest way to find out if you qualify for free legal aid in a housing case is to call your district legal aid neighbourhood office: Our housing unit provides assistance to low-income community members so they can access safe and affordable housing and stay safe in their homes. Call for help with evictions, landlords who refuse rent assistance (NC HOPE, etc.), mobile home evictions, public and subsidized leases, repairs and maintenance, and other landlord-tenant issues. Ask for free help with civil (non-criminal) legal matters. People aged 60 and over should call the Senior Helpline. Various organizations offer information to help tenants and landlords file an application or prepare for a housing court. For more information, see the links below. The NYS Attorney General provides information on a variety of tenant-related topics, including deposits, senior housing, small claims court, hiring a moving company, recent changes to NYS Tenancy Act, tenant harassment, fair housing, immigrant rights, illegal lockouts, etc. All tenants who are currently subject to an eviction order are eligible, regardless of their postal code, immigration status, or whether the tenant has previously refused or was not eligible for legal representation under the universal access program, and regardless of household income under an income exemption from the CJOC.