What to do if you have a Section 8 tenant who owes you rent
First, we need to ask, what kind of Section 8 program does the tenant have?
You can tell by looking at the vendor check.
If it is New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) there are special steps that you must take before you can bring the tenant to Court for rent.
This is because a 1980 case mandates that NYCHA get a copy of the demand notice. In that case, your interests were ignored and since then you have to do things that make no common sense, but it is the LAW!
And not just any demand notice either.
You Must Use the NYCHA Form
You must use the NYCHA form, and the most current form as there have been several changes over the years to these forms. The current form contains not just the tenant and landlord information but the exact amount demanded by month from the tenant. Also, Section 8 may change the tenant share many times during a tenancy so you must have good rent records in order to win. Finally, the form has a space for inputting the Vendor and Voucher numbers. Failure to complete the form properly will be fatal to your later case.
You Must Send the Notice to the Tenant by Certified Mail
You must be aware that the notice must be sent to the tenant by certified mail return receipt requested. After that is mailed at the US Post office, then copies of the proof of mailing need to be made, Then after that, one copy of the proof of mailing, together with a copy of the notice sent to tenant and a separate form which is to go to NYCHA must again be mailed by certified mail. And this is just the predicate notice part not the Court case.
NYCHA then has 30 days to decide if they agree with your math, or if they object to the Certification (demand notice).
Should they agree or 30 days passes then you are able to have your lawyer file the nonpayment case.
There are circumstances where certified mail is not enough. For instance when we need to serve a predicate (30-60 or 90 day) notice the process server will personally serve NYCHA or deliver by overnight mail.
Now back to your non-payment case. We still have to also prepare a 5 day notice, which we will do at the same time as the Certification as that also is sent by Certified Mail. Then we will prepare a 14 day notice as set forth in the horrific Tenant Protection Act of 2019 passed by then Governor Cuomo. If you have an HPD tenant we still have to do the 5 and 14 day notices but we do not have to do the certifications.
It is not the best idea for a lay person to attempt all this on her own or his own as certainly you will not be up to speed on all of the requirements the State of New York imposes upon Landlords.
We Can Help with the Section 8 Eviction Process !
We prepare the predicate notices, take care of the mailings, prepare and file your Non-Payment case and appear in Court at all appearances on your behalf. We also take care of the Warrant process right through the eviction.
Housing Court is a statutory Court. Many people attempt to go it alone and have lost time and money over the smallest mis-step. We have had many people come in after winning a case but they can not get the Warrant to issue. Doing things right the first time is the way to go in our opinion. We invite you to read our Google reviews and contact us for a case evaluation.
Consultation in our office is free. We just ask that you bring your lease, rent records and section 8 documents to your consultation as well as a set of front door keys for the process server as he must get to the apartment door to attempt service of papers on your tenant.
The section 8 eviction process is not quick as any Landlord would like. In fact it is downright awful. It is, after all, NYC, but unless you start properly you will never finish.
It’s your money and your house. Let us help you. You can email Evan Rogers, Esq at Evan@EvanRogersLaw.com or call 718-994-1640. Brenda or Stacy will take your information and make your appointment.
I have been doing this 40 years here at Evan Rogers Law, P.C.