The Real Deal New York

Florida-based investor suing Feil to open books at two UES apartment buildings

By David Jones | March 28, 2012 06:00PM

The Feil Organization is facing a lawsuit from South Florida-based investor Stanley Barry, who alleges the real estate firm has stonewalled his efforts to review the books at two apartment buildings on the Upper East Side.

In the suit, filed March 16 in New York State Supreme Court, Barry, is demanding that the company, led by CEO Jeffrey Feil, turn over all leases, tax returns, rent rolls and other financial records for the Clermont York at 445 East 80th Street and the Clermont at 444 East 82nd Street so he can determine whether any funds have been misappropriated or otherwise wasted.

According to the suit, Barry has been a partner since 1976 in the original ownership entity called Clermont York Associates, which was converted in 2004 to a firm called CYA LLC. Under the new agreement, Jeffrey Feil would run the day to day operations of the partnership, and Barry retained the right to review the books of the partnership.

“Throughout 2011, Mr. Barry’s attempts to obtain access to CYA LLC’s books and records were met with delay and incomplete responses,” wrote K&L Gates attorney Andrew Morrison, representing Barry, in the complaint.

Barry claims that in 2011, his requests to review the partnerships books were either ignored or delayed. In October 2011, he says his accountant requested access to the books and was told he would be able to see year-end information by May 2012 and first-half 2012 information by October 2012. He said that Feil unilaterally tried to limit Barry’s future access to those records.

Barry’s suit alleges that Feil has been acting in “bad faith” on the request, noting that on Feb. 7, Feil launched a separate lawsuit against  an entity called 990 AvAmericas Associates, demanding that the general partners at that building open up their books to the Feil Organization.

The Feil Organization is one of the city’s oldest family-owned real estate firms, and own or manage more than 26 million square feet of space and operate a number of high-profile properties, including the Apthorp, at 390 West End Avenue.

Feil declined to comment as did lawyers for Barry.

“Due to the pending litigation we cannot comment on the specific allegations asserted against our clients but we deny that our clients have acted improperly in any way with respect to these allegations,” said attorney Avi Lew, representing 990 Sixth Avenue, which is led by investor Harry Karten.