Legal Aid Society

Projects, Units & Initiatives

Citywide Housing Practice

Our Housing Justice units work to promote housing stability and prevent homelessness among the city’s most vulnerable families and individuals. We take a holistic approach: defending individuals and families facing evictions in housing court; enforcing the housing maintenance code and effectuating repairs; group advocacy work on behalf of tenant associations; and law reform efforts through which we resolve systemic inequities. These units ensure that more and more New Yorkers are able to continue living in their homes and that our city is a place where all of its communities can prosper.

Our Impact

Our Housing Justice unit recently assisted Ms. M, a senior who was facing eviction from her long-term rent stabilized apartment. Ms. M lives with her two grandchildren and supports all three of them on her monthly social security income of just under $1,500. Ms. M had fallen behind in her rent payment after the IRS had begun garnishing a portion of her social security check each month, which left Ms. M without enough to cover rent and other essentials. Our housing staff helped negotiate a payment schedule with her landlord, while staff from our Low Income Taxpayer Clinic succeeded in advocating with the IRS to stop wage garnishments from a previous tax debt, which significantly increased Ms. M’s income. Ms. M has since been able to pay off her rental arrears and has been able to remain in her home with her two grandchildren. Without our intervention, the family faced the loss of their long-term rent stabilized home and potential homelessness.