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Some questions pertaining to Landlord - Tenant law.

Customer Question
Some questions pertaining to...

Some questions pertaining to Landlord - Tenant law

Lawyer's Assistant: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state the property is in?

Westchester County, NY

Lawyer's Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?

Notice of Petition

Submitted: 2 months ago.Category: Legal
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
12/15/2017
Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 2 months ago
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 8,321
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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Hello! I am a licensed attorney, admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here for more info) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today.

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only. What specific questions did you have? I have an idea about your situation, but I don’t want to make any assumptions.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
As a commercial tenant, I have documented a year-long campaign by my landlord of harassment against me. Even though I delayed October 2017 rent (10 days) but offered to pay rent on October 10, 2017 rent (he refused to pick up rent check at my office) landlord posted a Notice to Tenant paper for non-payment of rent on November 10, 2017. His attorney, on November 14, 2017, directed me that I would have to pay $3,100 within 3-days, or be locked out (change of locks) on November 19, 2017. Although I had moved out some furniture on November 17, 2017, Landlord changed locks on November 21, 2017, evicting me from my space without court process or approval. Is this legal?Note: On November 20, 2017, the attorney asked me for permission for his client to re-enter my space. I did not respond to him nor grant permission. Attorney’s claim to the court (supplementary hearing on December 12, 2017) is that I moved out my furniture making it legal for Landlord to change lock on my door.
Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 2 months ago

I'm sorry to hear about your situation. That is highly unfortunate. In most situations, a landlord cannot lock a tenant out. Generally, a landlord may re-enter leased commercial premises peaceably, without resorting to court process, in NY state, where something like this is permitted. but only if the right to do so is expressly reserved in a commercial lease, either a) upon the tenant's defaulting on the payment of rent or other lease terms, or b) upon termination of the lease or the tenant's abandoning the premises. If you defaulted on the payment and the right to do so was in the lease, then what they did was legal. Otherwise, it's a breach of contract and courts are often hostile to letting landlords do this.

If it was not in the lease, then this appears to be a classic breach of contract. A breach of contract just simply means that one party was obligated to perform and they have either have not performed or have said that they will not perform. Typically, the aggrieved party is entitled to be returned to the same position they were in before the breach. There’s a site that I’ve used in the past where you can find a good template for advising of a breach of contract. It's a bit easier (and cheaper) than going through litigation and I have seen it be effective in the past. If this doesn’t work, sadly, the only other option is to either go through an informal mediation or file a lawsuit in your local court. This website is also pretty cool because you can download the forms right after purchasing. Click here to get started.

What other questions did you have for me today that I can help you out with:-)?

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