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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 113493
Experience:  Attorney with over 24 years experience.
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I reside in Brooklyn, New York. My elderly mother passed

Customer Question

I reside in Brooklyn, New York. My elderly mother passed away in August 2011. My son, who was helping to take care of her when she became ill and lived with her before she died, continued to live in her rent-controlled apartment in Brooklyn. Her rent has been paid from my checking account for years and delivered by my son to the management office each month. When he took September's rent, the office refused to accept it. What legal rights does he have to remain in the apartment as a successor tenant?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

Was your son on the lease?

Has probate been conducted yet in surrogate court?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
my son name is ***** ***** the lease, no
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your reply.

I am afraid that under NY law, for rent controlled apartments, they may be inherited by the legal heir of the tenant. So as your son is not really the legal heir, he cannot inherit the lease unless you are the legal heir and you renounce your right to inherit from your mom's estate and then your son could become legal heir and this would require you to then open probate in surrogate court with a local attorney to renounce your rights as heir to your mom's estate and allow your son to step in and be named legal heir and if he is legal heir he gets to inherit the rent controlled apartment, which he has to reside in (unless you are willing to reside there and then you do not have to renounce and you can move in to the apartment). Either way you have to open probate in surrogate court and serve the landlord notice of probate and that would prevent eviction until heirs are named by the court to take over the apartment as residents.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
no
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thank you
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your reply.

No what? I only explained what your options were above. What are you responding "no" to?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
they have been excepting my checks with my name on and my mothers address before she died until last month
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your reply.

I understand they have been taking payment from you and your son has been living there, but at some point probate must be done in Surrogate court to name the legal heirs so that the legal heir can inherit the apartment and then the apartment management would have to put the legal heir's name on the lease and they could not terminate the lease. This is why I said above you have to open probate and serve notice on the apartment management and this would hold up the eviction until the heir is named and you would keep paying rent.