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Starting a Case

In General
Predicate Notices
Starting a Case
Going to Court

In General

A holdover case is brought to evict a tenant or a person in the apartment who is not a tenant for reasons other than simple nonpayment of rent. A holdover case is much more complicated than a nonpayment case. A holdover proceeding can have many variations. For example, if the tenant has violated a lease provision, illegally put others in the apartment, has become a nuisance to other tenants, or is staying after a lease has expired, the landlord may bring a holdover case. A roommate who is named on the lease can also bring a holdover proceeding to evict a roommate who is not named on the lease from the apartment.

There may or may not be a landlord/tenant relationship, and the petitioner may or may not need to show a good reason why a respondent’s occupancy should be terminated. The rights of the parties may be determined by a lease or other agreement, housing laws and regulations and/or the New York State or United States Constitution. A predicate notice may or may not have to be served.

The information given below is very general and there can be a number of differences in individual cases. The help of a lawyer is recommended in holdover cases.

You can go to Landlord’s Guide for more information about bringing a proceeding in Housing Court or visit the Civil Court Help Center in your county. You can go to Help Center to learn more.

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Predicate Notices

There are many notices that are required by law to be served on the tenant prior to the commencement of a holdover proceeding, depending on the nature of the tenancy and the grounds upon which the proceeding is brought. They include Notices to Quit, Notices to Cure a Substantial Violation of the Lease, Notices of Termination or Notices of Intent Not To Renew a Lease. For example, a 10-day Notice to Quit is for a "squatter" or "licensee." Someone you allowed to stay with you without paying is called a "licensee." A "squatter" is a person who came in without permission and did not pay any rent. The forms can be purchased at a legal stationary store, such as Blumberg.

You must purchase the appropriate predicate notice form and serve it on the tenant in the manner required by law. Different rules for when and how to serve the predicate notices apply in different cases. For example, a 30-day notice must be served on the tenant before the beginning of the next "rental term." A rental term is the time beginning the day the tenant is supposed to pay the rent and ending the day before the next rental payment is due. If you are using the 10-day notice for a licensee or squatter, you can serve it at any time. If you need a 10-day notice to quit for a licensee you can use the free and easy Small Property Owner Licensee Holdover Petition DIY Form program to make the notice. Once you obtain the correct predicate notice, you should complete the form and make photocopies.

For more information, you can speak to a free Housing Court Counselor in the Civil Court Help Center in your county. To find out where to go, refer to Help Center.

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Starting a Case

If you are starting a licensee holdover because there is a person living in the premises who your tenant invited to stay before your tenant moved out, you can use the free and easy Small Property Owner Licensee Holdover Petition DIY Form program to make your court papers. For any other kind of holdover case, you must purchase the following legal forms, which can be purchased in a legal stationary store, such as Blumberg:

Predicate Notice
Service Copies
Notice of Petition

The holdover petition must contain:
1) the interest of the petitioner in the premises;
2) the interest of the respondent in the premises and his/her relationship with the petitioner;
3) a description of the premises;
4) the facts upon which the proceeding is based; and,
5) the relief sought.

The Rules of the Court also require a petitioner to plead whether the building is a multiple dwelling, and if so, that there is a currently effective registration statement on file with the office of code enforcement, and the multiple dwelling registration number along with the name and address of the managing agent. See Finding the Multiple Dwelling Registration Information.

You must fill out the forms and then bring the forms, including the predicate notice, to the cashier’s window, at the Landlord-Tenant Clerk’s Office to buy an index number. Payment may be made by cash, certified check or money order. Make the money order or certified check payable to the "Clerk of the Civil Court." Go to Locations to find out where to go in your county. Go to Court Fees to find out the cost of starting the case.

You must choose the court date on the Notice of Petition. A Landlord/Tenant clerk will give you the courtroom number and the assigned time for you to fill out on the papers. The clerk will give you back the Notice of Petition with the index number stamped onto it and the date of the hearing.

The landlord must make sure the tenant receives a copy of the Notice of Petition and the Petition in the manner required by law. The copies of the Petition and Notice of Petition must be served not less than five calendar days and not more than twelve calendar days from the court date. Go to Service of the Notice of Petition and Petition to learn more.

After serving the papers, the landlord must bring back the original Notice of Petition with the notarized affidavit of service on the back filled out. In addition, the landlord must bring in the stamped postcard so that the court can mail it to the tenant.

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Going to Court

You should go to court on the date and time stated on the notice of petition. You can refer to Directions if you do not know how to get to the courthouse. Get there early, since you will need to go through a metal detector before entering the courthouse. You should bring all your evidence in support of your claim or defense. The first courtroom you go to is called a "Resolution Part." To learn more about what happens there, go to Resolution Part, or you may go to Video to watch a video about the Resolution Part.



















































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