senate Bill S5940

Amended

Clarifies the definition of tenant to exclude squatters

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 27 / Sep / 2013
    • REFERRED TO RULES
  • 20 / Nov / 2013
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO RULES
  • 20 / Nov / 2013
    • PRINT NUMBER 5940A
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO HOUSING, CONSTRUCTION AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

Summary

Clarifies the definition of "tenant" to exclude squatters.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S5940
S5940A
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Current Committee:
Senate Housing, Construction And Community Development
Law Section:
Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law
Laws Affected:
Amd ยง711, RPAP L

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S5940

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the real property actions and
proceedings law, in relation to clarifying the definition of "tenant"
to exclude squatters

PURPOSE:

This legislation would clarify the definition of tenant to exclude
squatters.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section 711 of the real property actions and proceedings law, is
amended to clarify the definition of tenant to exclude squatters.

For the purposes of this article, a tenant shall not include a person
who enters onto a property with the intent of squatting on the
property or otherwise settles on land or occupies property without
title, right, or payment of rent.

JUSTIFICATION:

Under New York State law, squatters are classified as tenants and
receive temporary rights as such after living in a property for a
period of 30 days. To reclaim property from a squatter after thirty
days, an owner must be able to prove a right to the property and
proceed with legal eviction proceedings.

The special proceeding may give the owner an order that a sheriff can
then enforce to remove the squatter. The owner may not remove the
tenant himself.

As a bi-product of the strained housing market, squatters are
infiltrating neighborhoods, entering empty properties and abusing the
loophole in New York State law. This legislation will remove the
protection granted under current law and exclude squatters from the
definition of tenant.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

New bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:

To be determined.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect immediately.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  5940

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                           September 27, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen.  MARCELLINO  -- read twice and ordered printed, and
  when printed to be committed to the Committee on Rules

AN ACT to amend the  real  property  actions  and  proceedings  law,  in
  relation to clarifying the definition of "tenant" to exclude squatters

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Section 711 of the real property  actions  and  proceedings
law,  as  added  by chapter 312 of the laws of 1962, the section heading
and opening paragraph as amended by chapter 739 of  the  laws  of  1982,
subdivision 1 as amended by chapter 305 of the laws of 1963 and subdivi-
sion 6 as amended by chapter 699 of the laws of 1985, is amended to read
as follows:
  S  711.  Grounds  where  landlord-tenant relationship exists. 1. (A) A
tenant shall include an occupant of one or more rooms in a rooming house
or a resident, not including a transient occupant, of one or more  rooms
in  a  hotel  who  has been in possession for thirty consecutive days or
longer; he shall not be removed from  possession  except  in  a  special
proceeding.
  (B)  FOR  THE  PURPOSES  OF THIS ARTICLE, A TENANT SHALL NOT INCLUDE A
PERSON WHO ENTERS ONTO PROPERTY WITH THE  INTENT  OF  SQUATTING  ON  THE
PROPERTY  OR  OTHERWISE  SETTLES  ON  LAND  OR OCCUPIES PROPERTY WITHOUT
TITLE, RIGHT, OR PAYMENT OF RENT.
  2. A special proceeding may be maintained under this article upon  the
following grounds:
  [1.]  (A)  The  tenant  continues  in possession of any portion of the
premises after the expiration of his term, without the permission of the
landlord or, in a case where a new lessee  is  entitled  to  possession,
without  the  permission  of  the  new  lessee. Acceptance of rent after
commencement of the special proceeding upon this ground shall not termi-
nate such proceeding nor effect any award of possession to the  landlord
or  to  the  new  lessee,  as  the  case may be. A proceeding seeking to

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD11833-01-3

S. 5940                             2

recover possession of real property by reason of the termination of  the
term fixed in the lease pursuant to a provision contained therein giving
the  landlord  the right to terminate the time fixed for occupancy under
such  agreement  if he deem the tenant objectionable, shall not be main-
tainable unless the landlord shall by competent  evidence  establish  to
the satisfaction of the court that the tenant is objectionable.
  [2.]  (B) The tenant has defaulted in the payment of rent, pursuant to
the agreement under which the premises are held, and  a  demand  of  the
rent has been made, or at least three days' notice in writing requiring,
in  the  alternative,  the payment of the rent, or the possession of the
premises, has been served upon him as prescribed in section [735]  SEVEN
HUNDRED THIRTY-FIVE OF THIS ARTICLE. The landlord may waive his right to
proceed upon this ground only by an express consent in writing to permit
the  tenant  to continue in possession, which consent shall be revocable
at will, in which event the landlord shall be deemed to have waived  his
right  to  summary dispossess for nonpayment of rent accruing during the
time said consent remains unrevoked.  Any person succeeding to the land-
lord's interest in the premises may proceed under this  subdivision  for
rent  due his predecessor in interest if he has a right thereto. Where a
tenant dies during the term of the lease and rent due has not been  paid
and no representative or person has taken possession of the premises and
no  administrator  or executor has been appointed, the proceeding may be
commenced after three months from the date of death  of  the  tenant  by
joining  the  surviving  spouse  or  if  there  is none, then one of the
surviving issue or if there is none, then any one of the distributees.
  [3.] (C) The tenant, in a city defaults in the payment, for sixty days
after the same shall be payable, of any taxes or assessments  levied  on
the  premises  which  he  has  agreed  in writing to pay pursuant to the
agreement under which the premises are held, and a  demand  for  payment
has  been  made, or at least three days' notice in writing, requiring in
the alternative the payment thereof and  of  any  interest  and  penalty
thereon, or the possession of the premises, has been served upon him, as
prescribed  in  section [735] SEVEN HUNDRED THIRTY-FIVE OF THIS ARTICLE.
An acceptance of any rent shall not be construed  as  a  waiver  of  the
agreement to pay taxes or assessments.
  [4.]  (D) The tenant, under a lease for a term of three years or less,
has during the term taken the benefit of an insolvency  statute  or  has
been adjudicated a bankrupt.
  [5.]  (E) The premises, or any part thereof, are used or occupied as a
bawdy-house, or house or place of assignation for lewd persons,  or  for
purposes  of  prostitution,  or for any illegal trade or manufacture, or
other illegal business.
  [6.] (F) The tenant, in a city having a population of one  million  or
more, removes the batteries or otherwise disconnects or makes inoperable
an  installed  smoke or fire detector which the tenant has not requested
be moved from its location so as not to interfere  with  the  reasonable
use of kitchen facilities provided that the court, upon complaint there-
of,  has previously issued an order of violation of the provisions here-
tofore stated and, subsequent to the thirtieth day after service of such
order upon the tenant, an official inspection report by the  appropriate
department  of  housing  preservation  and  development is presented, in
writing, indicating non-compliance herewith; provided further, that  the
tenant  shall  have the additional ten day period to cure such violation
in accordance with the provisions of subdivision four of  section  seven
hundred fifty-three of this [chapter] ARTICLE.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

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