Granddaughter Can’t Occupy Unit as Remaining Family Member
Facts: A local housing authority denied a granddaughter’s request to succeed as a remaining family member to the unit formerly leased to her deceased grandmother. She’s 29 years old and claimed to have moved into her grandmother’s unit when she was 3 years old. She also claimed to have continuously resided in the unit since moving in.
The housing authority first became aware that the granddaughter resided in the unit in April 2008, when the grandmother included her name on the Occupant’s Affidavit of Income and submitted a Permanent Permission Request for her to join the household. The family didn’t receive a response, but the granddaughter testified that she became aware she wasn’t added to the household when she received the tenant’s lease addendum and rent notice in May 2009.
In March 2010, the site manager concluded that the granddaughter wasn’t entitled to a lease because the grandmother never got management’s written permission for her to reside in the unit. The granddaughter then sued, asking the court to rule that the housing authority’s determination was arbitrary and capricious.
Ruling: A New York trial court denied the granddaughter’s request.
Reasoning: The regulations require that an applicant receive permission to be added as a remaining family member [24 CFR §966.4(a)(v)]. This regulation states that, “The family must promptly inform the Public Housing Authority of the birth, adoption, or court-awarded custody of a child. The family must request public housing authority approval to add any other family member as an occupant of the unit.”
Regardless of whether she resided in the unit since she was 3 years old, the court concluded that there was no written consent given to permanently join the household and, therefore, the granddaughter failed to fulfill the lawful entry requirement to obtain remaining member status.
- Camacho v. NYCHA, February 2013