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Landlords and Coops Must Notify Tenants of Their Right to Reasonable Accommodations

On May 18, 2022 the New York State Division of Human Rights (“DHR”) adopted a new rule, 9 NYCRR §466.15, requiring all Housing Providers in New York City to notify their tenants and/or cooperative shareholders of their right to reasonable accommodations or modifications for disabilities by June 16, 2022. This requires fast action. 

If a Housing Provider fails to properly notify its tenants in the time frame required, it could subject the provider to administrative complaints and/or a Supreme Court actions resulting in injunctive relief, civil fines or penalties. Therefore, it’s important that all housing providers consult with qualified counsel to properly prepare and distribute the appropriate notice within the next few days.      

A “Housing Provider” includes all Landlords, Managing Agents, Cooperative Corporations and Real Estate Agents and each provider is required to notify its tenants or prospective tenants of their right to reasonable accommodations or modifications for disabilities, which is a change to the Provider’s existing policies, or a modification, which is a physical change to a building or unit, so that all tenants can equally access and use their living spaces.

Tenants with disabilities must be afforded an equal opportunity to use and access their units and the common areas of their buildings, which may necessitate requests for “reasonable” modifications and accommodations. Upon receiving any such request, Cooperative Boards and Managing Agents would be wise to consult with counsel to determine the proper course of action.

As a good practice, landlords and cooperative corporations should also formulate procedures to expeditiously and appropriately handle requests from tenants for modifications or accommodations.  

If you have any questions about crafting and distributing an effective and compliant notice or instituting the appropriate policy, please contact our office for further guidance.  

Please note that this article is not a substitute for legal advice, and you should always consult an attorney if you have any questions about whether you are providing proper notice.

The attorneys at Norris McLaughlin, P.A. have extensive experience representing cooperative and affordable housing corporations as well as luxury cooperatives and condominiums in all facets of their operations. If you have any questions about this article or any other related matters, please email Dean Roberts at droberts@norris-law.com, Michael Reilly at mtreilly@norris-law.com, Michael Willner at mjwilner@norris-law.com, or Lauren Lewis at lelewis@norris-law.com.

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