Rosenberg & Estis, P.C. Successfully Voids Illegal 40-Year Rent-Stabilized Lease


Decision Voids Illegal Rent-Stabilized Lease of Corporate Tenant in Midtown Manhattan


For Immediate Release

Shea Communications, LLC
George Shea, Mark Faris (212) 627-5766

Rosenberg & Estis, P.C. continues its successful representation of River Tower with a First Department, Appellate Division victory, affirming the trial court’s order voiding an illegal rent-stabilized lease at 420 East 54th Street. On May 16, 2019 the First Department upheld R&E’s arguments and terminated the possessory rights of the corporate tenant, the defendant in this case.

R&E’s Blaine Z. Schwadel, member associate, represented River Tower.

In 1991, two corporate entities owned by Harry Macklowe entered into a residential lease for a rent-stabilized apartment located at the River Tower apartment building in Manhattan. The lease provided for a fixed 40-year term that would expire in 2031 and failed to name a person as an occupant of the apartment. River Tower purchased the building in 2016 and, recognizing that the lease was improper, sought counsel from R&E.

R&E commenced the action and, prior to discovery, moved for summary judgment. R&E argued the lease violates the Rent Stabilization Code and is void because, among other things, its 40-year term improperly removed the lease from the market for a generation of renters and the lease failed to name a person as an occupant.

The First Department affirmed the trial court’s order granting R&E’s motion which voided the lease, terminated corporate tenant’s right to the apartment and awarded landlord a judgment of ejectment.

“This victory for our client, River Tower, is a win for all New York City owners and the real estate industry at large,” attorney said. “With its decision, the First Department re-affirms that illegal leases will not be tolerated and are void.”