There are few legal fights more lopsided than landlords suing to evict their lower-income tenants.
In New York City’s housing court, it’s usually a team of lawyers representing the landlord going against a tenant, unrepresented and alone. The claims for eviction vary — the tenant owes months of back rent, or is not named on the lease. If the landlord doesn’t win, very often the tenant is muscled out with threats and harassment.
Many others are pushed out when landlords — eager to raise rents or demolish buildings to make way for pricey new developments — illegally withhold basic services like heat and hot water, or offer paltry buyouts.