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N.Y. AG announces agreement with Manhattan development owners

By Bryan Cohen | Jun 19, 2013

NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced an agreement Tuesday with the owners of a Manhattan housing development who allegedly misled tenants about a mid-lease rent increase.

On May 14, CW Capital, the owners of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village, told close to 1,000 residents of the housing development that they would be subject to a mid-lease rent increase. CW Capital included a rider in tenant leases to permit the increase, but more than a dozen tenants alleged that leasing agents misrepresented the rider's meaning when encouraging tenants to sign leases.

"Residents of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village have been through battle after battle to preserve the character and affordability of their community," Schneiderman said. "That's why I was so concerned to learn that some tenants had been misled by leasing agents into signing leases that would result in skyrocketing rents. I am pleased that the owners cooperated with our office's investigation and have entered into an agreement that ensures tenants are treated fairly: no one who was promised a steady rent will be socked with a mid-lease increase."

Under the terms of the agreement, CW Capital agreed to place a ban on mid-lease increases for more than 2,000 tenants whose leases allowed for the increases, let tenants who already filed to terminate their leases withdraw the terminations and stay in their apartments without rent increases and allow affected tenants to submit an affidavit to Schneiderman's office describing how and when they claim they were misled. Tenants claiming they were misled who submit the affidavit by June 30 will not be subject to rent increases.

"In addition, the settlement's prohibition on any additional mid-term rent increases ensures an end to this latest struggle to keep the neighborhood a haven for the middle class," Schneiderman said. "My office will keep a close watch in the coming weeks to ensure that all aspects of the agreement are honored."

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