A New York State Bar Association radio campaign hits the New York City airwaves this week alerting the public about their rights when landlords screen prospective tenants. 

"Landlords can use Housing Court records to screen potential tenants in New York City. But what if the records have errors? The good news for tenants is that they may be able to correct mistakes in their Housing Court records," said State Bar President Vincent E. Doyle III of Buffalo (Connors & Vilardo LLP).

Running through October 23, the scripts for the two radio announcements are as follows:

60-second ad: This is Vince Doyle, president of the New York State Bar Association. In New York City, finding an apartment can be tough. If you've had a hard time getting a landlord's approval to rent you an apartment, one reason could be that you were involved in a Housing Court case in the past. Your Housing Court history is public information. Landlords can use that information when deciding whether to rent you an apartment, even though there could be mistakes in the records. The good news is you may be able to correct errors in your record. Also, the Tenant Fair Chance Act requires landlords to tell you if they use a company to screen tenants and the name of that company. For more information, please contact Housing Court Answers at 212-962-4785, Monday through Thursday, or visit the website at www.hcanswers.org. 

Brought to you by the New York State Bar Association, in cooperation with the New York Market Radio Association.  
    
30-second ad: Hi, this is Vince Doyle, president of the New York State Bar Association. In New York City, finding an apartment can be tough. If you've been involved in a Housing Court case, landlords can use that information to decide whether to rent to you. However, you may be able to correct errors in your record. For information, contact Housing Court Answers at 212-962-4795, or hcanswers.org.

Brought to you by the New York State Bar Association, in cooperation with the New York Market Radio Association. 

The education initiative stems from a $1.2 million settlement approved in 2009 from the 2004 case, White v. First Advantage SafeRent, Inc. (04 CV 01611). The plaintiffs were represented by James B. Fishman of New York (Fishman & Neil, LLP), Andrew Bell of New York (Locks Law Firm), Seth
Lesser of White Plains (Klafter Olsen & Lesser), and Stacey Canan of Washington, D.C. (AARP Foundation). Part of the settlement includes funding tenant screening and awareness programs.

Funds were distributed to The New York Bar Foundation, which provides funding for projects to be conducted by The Legal Aid Society, Legal Services NYC, City-Wide Task Force on Housing Court (now called Housing Court Answers), Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project and the New York State Bar Association.

The 77,000-member New York State Bar Association is the largest state voluntary bar association in the nation. It was founded in 1876.

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Contact: Brandon Vogel
Media Writer
bvogel@nysba.org
518/487-5535