Airbnb files suit against Schneiderman, de Blasio

Civil suit claims deprivation of Constitutional rights

TRD New York /
Oct.October 21, 2016 04:31 PM
2016-10-21

From left: Bill de Blasio, Nathan Blecharczyk, Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Eric Schneiderman

Airbnb filed a federal lawsuit Friday afternoon naming state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City of New York as defendants after Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill into law earlier in the day banning the advertising of illegal short-term listings.

The $30 billion San Francisco-based startup filed the civil lawsuit in Manhattan’s Southern District court claiming a deprivation of Constitutional rights. “It is an unjustifiable content-based restriction on speech in violation of the First Amendment,” the lawsuit states.

Airbnb further alleges the city’s “restrictions will make it more difficult for city residents to use home-sharing to help pay their rent or mortgage, making the city less affordable,” according to the complaint.

As of Oct. 1, there were roughly 46,000 hosts listed on Airbnb in New York. The tech firm says it has also made efforts to cut down on illegal rentals by removing over 2,900 listings in New York City as of September.

In response, Schneiderman released a statement saying his office would defend the law.

“The law signed today will provide vital protections for New York tenants and help prevent the continued proliferation of illegal, unregulated hotels, and we will defend it,” the statement read. “Airbnb can’t have it both ways: it must either police illegal activity on its own site — or government will act to protect New Yorkers, as the State just did.”

Airbnb is being represented by Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher attorney Mylan Denerstein, who could not be immediately reached for comment.

Earlier in the day, Cuomo signed a bill that imposes fines of up to $7,500 per violation for New Yorkers who list illegal short-term rentals in violation of the state’s 2010 multiple dwelling law.

Cuomo signed the bill, which the state Legislature passed in June, after “careful, deliberate consideration,” a spokesperson said.

In a last-ditch attempt to sway Cuomo, Airbnb suggested it would limit the number of listings per host to just one.


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios

SoftBank taps former Sprint CEO to fix WeWork, this borough could house Trump’s presidential library: Daily Digest

The purge continues: WeWork’s head of real estate is leaving

Fisher Brothers' Winston Fisher and 55 East 52nd Street (Credit: Getty Images)

Airbnb investor takes more pricey office space on Park Avenue

When Bill de Blasio announced the end of his campaign, the industry reacted largely with relief but not surprise (Credit: Getty Images and Pixabay)

De Blasio’s campaign is dead, and real estate is happy

Governor Andrew Cuomo and Senator James Skoufis (Credit: Getty Images, NY Senate)

Owners of some residential properties can’t hide behind
LLCs anymore

Gary Barnett says luxury market is crowded, WeWork IPO woes continue: Daily Digest

From left: Mayor Bill de Blasio, 54 West 39th Street, 62 Grand Street, and 208 West 30th Street (Credit: Google Maps)

The Airbnb crackdown continues: City targets three more buildings

Margaret Streicker Porres and 101 West 78th Street (Credit: Linkedin, Corcoran, iStock)

Newcastle Realty was repeatedly accused of violating New York’s old rent laws. Now it says it’s leaving New York because of the new rent law.

arrow_forward_ios