Legislation Protecting Tenants from Abusive Practices Passes Senate

Andrea Stewart-Cousins

June 03, 2010

State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/WF – 35th District) announced today that the Senate unanimously approved legislation that will empower renters that have been cheated out of their deposits, by making it easier to take landlords to small claims court. The bill, (S4781A), allows tenants to be heard in court where their apartment is located rather than where the landlord’s business is registered.

A landlord’s official business site can be very far from where they actually rent units, placing an unnecessary burden on all tenants but particularly seniors and those without the means to travel.

“Often times, tenants do not have the financial resources to travel long distances, limiting their ability to seek a legal remedy and gives abusers an incentive to continue business as usual,” said Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins. “Each citizen should have access to the protections our legal system affords, regardless of the financial resources available to them.”

“I applaud Senator Liz Krueger for spearheading this legislation that will result in tenants having the ability to seek recourse where they live when there is a dispute with their landlord,” Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins concluded.

The bill is awaiting final action in the Assembly.