Evictions down 20% in parts of NYC where tenants get free lawyers

Drop is fueling a push to expand the city’s Right to Counsel law

TRD NEW YORK /
Feb.February 24, 2020 10:15 AM
Evictions are going down in parts of the city where Right to Counsel applies, sparking a push to expand the law. (Credit: iStock)

Evictions are down in parts of the city where Right to Counsel applies, sparking a push to expand the law. (Credit: iStock)

Evictions in areas where low-income tenants received city-funded legal services funded dropped by almost 20 percent last year, according to an analysis from the nonprofit Community Service Society of New York.

The drop took place in the 20 New York ZIP codes targeted by the 2017 Right to Counsel law, according to The City. The program is being expanded to provide free housing court legal services across the city by 2022, and the City Council is considering broadening eligibility for the program.

The current law sets the income eligibility limit at 200 percent of the federal poverty level, but the City Council is discussing whether to expand this to 400 percent. Members are also looking at mandating education to better inform tenants of their rights in Housing Court.

“It’s really, really difficult — close to impossible — for unrepresented people to navigate their way through Housing Court proceedings in any way, shape or form,” Andrew Scherer, New York Law School’s policy director of the Impact Center for Public Interest Law, told The City. “It’s a complex body of law, and in these proceedings, almost all of the landlords are represented by counsel. So they’ve always been unfair.” [The City– Eddie Small


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Tenant group Housing Justice for All is using the coronavirus crisis to demand a moratorium on evictions. (Credit: iStock)

New York tenant group demands eviction moratorium in wake of health crisis

Antonio Reynoso and 140 Devoe Street in Brooklyn (Credit: Google Maps)

Council closes tax-lien loophole that threatened property seizures

An aerial of Flushing's waterfront and New York City Council member Peter Koo (Credit: Google Maps)

Massive Flushing waterfront development stirs opposition

City Council member Bill Perkins and Lenox Terrace 484 Lenox Avenue (Credit: Getty Images and Google Maps)

Council drives another nail in coffin of Olnick’s Lenox Terrace project

City Council member Bill Perkins and Lenox Terrace 484 Lenox Avenue (Credit: Getty Images and Google Maps)

Is Olnick bluffing on Lenox Terrace? History says no

Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson with an aerial of 320 Concord Avenue, the site of the jail project (Credit: Getty Images, Google Maps)

Housing complex takes South Bronx jail project to court

City Council Speaker Corey Johnson (Credit: Getty Images, iStock)

City Council wants more oversight of “ghost kitchens”

Rafael Salamanca and the Bronx (Credit: Getty Images, iStock)

Bronx councilman snuffs out another de Blasio rezoning

arrow_forward_ios
Loading...