The Real Deal New York

Designer faces boot from Tribeca apartment after fake marriage

Anya Ponorovskaya says her husband tricked her into thinking they were legally wed

June 17, 2014 08:00AM

Apartment-Feud

A New York fashion designer says her “husband” is trying to evict her from their luxury Tribeca apartment after he tricked her into thinking they were married.

In 2010, designer Anya Ponorovskaya ostensibly wed Wylie Stecklow, a lawyer best known for winning $583,000 in damages for Occupy Wall Street protesters, the New York Post reported. Soon after the ceremony, Ponorovskaya says she paid part of the mortgage on a $1 million Tribeca apartment, but did not sign the lease because Stecklow allegedly told her it was not necessary. When the designer filed for divorce last year, she learned the union was not legal because the couple never secured a marriage certificate.

The value of the apartment is now nearly $2 million and Ponorovskaya tells the Post she fears she will lose her investment. Her lawyer, Rita Warner, is citing a 107-year-old law that says a marriage is legit if it is sufficiently “solemnized.” A Manhattan court judge has balked, however, saying the century-old law “would undoubtedly come as a surprise to all those couples who patiently wait on the long lines at the Marriage License Bureau.” [NYP] – Tom DiChristopher

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