Casado v. Markus
In Casado v. Markus, various tenants challenged the legality of Rent Guidelines Board (RGB) Orders 40 and 41, which required certain rent stabilized tenants renewing their leases to pay an additional increase where their rents were below $1,000 per month. The tenants alleged that the RGB did not have the authority to impose this surcharge, which they described as a “tax on the poor.” The Supreme Court and the Appellate Division agreed, invalidating the surcharge. The matter went to the Court of Appeals, wherein Rosenberg & Estis represented amici curiae Rent Stabilization Association (RSA) and Community Housing Improvement Program (CHIP). The Court of Appeals, reversing, held that the Rent Stabilization Law did not prohibit the RGB from making “common sense distinctions” between discrete classes of apartments, as the RGB had been doing for 40 years. The Court reinstated the surcharges, authorizing landlords throughout New York City to collect millions of dollars in back surcharges.
(Court of Appeals of New York – Decided: March 24, 2011)