Get Help with a Lapsed or Expired Benefit

IMPORTANT NOTICE TO TENANTS WHO RECEIVE OR FORMERLY RECEIVED A NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE "SCRIE" OR "DRIE" RENT FREEZE

YOU MAY QUALIFY TO HAVE YOUR RENT REDUCED

If you are a tenant in New York City who now receives, or used to receive, a rent freeze under the City's SCRIE (Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption) or DRIE (Disability Rent Increase Exemption) program, you may be entitled to have your rent reduced to your old frozen rent levels.

If you were unable to appeal a decision or renew your SCRIE or DRIE benefits at any time after December 1, 2011 because you needed more time to file due to a disability or physical or mental impairment, and either you lost your rent freeze benefit or your rent is now frozen at a higher level, you have a chance to be reinstated at your old rent level, even if you have already been reinstated but at a higher rent. This is because of a settlement of a class action case in federal court, Pfeffer et al v. DOF et al, 15 CV 3547, Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom presiding.

To see if you qualify, you must apply to be reinstated by submitting either an "Application for Additional Time to Renew Lapsed Benefit" or an "Application for Additional Time to Renew Expired Benefit." If you need an application you can request one by calling 311 to request one of these Department of Finance ("DOF") applications, or by visiting a DOF office (open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.):

Manhattan: SCRIE/DRIE Walk-In Center, 66 John Street, 3rd Floor
Bronx: 3030 Third Avenue, 2nd Floor
Brooklyn: 210 Joralemon Street
Queens: 144-06 94th Avenue, Jamaica
Staten Island: 350 St. Marks Place

When you submit the application form to DOF, you also may need to provide documents that show your household's financial eligibility, along with copies of old leases. Further information on financial eligibility is available by contacting the Department of Finance at 311 or online at http://www1.nyc.gov/site/rentfreeze/index.page. If you paid a higher rent than your original frozen rent, you may be entitled to reimbursement of the excess rent payments if you provide proof of payment of this higher rent with your application.

You may also contact DOF's Disability Services Facilitator if you have any questions about this process or need help with the form or obtaining documents by calling 311 or submitting an on-line message at: nyc.gov/contactdofeeo.

Please send the application and any supporting documentation to the address on that application no later than October 26, 2018:

PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU MUST REQUEST RELIEF PRIOR TO THE DEADLINE LISTED ABOVE TO ENSURE THAT YOU CAN BE CONSIDERED FOR FULL RELIEF UNDER THE PROPOSED SETTLEMENT. FAILURE TO SUBMIT DOCUMENTATION OF EXCESS RENT PAYMENT PRIOR TO THE DEADLINE WILL RESULT IN AN INABILITY TO RECEIVE REIMBURSEMENT FOR THOSE PAYMENTS.

YOU ARE ENTITLED TO OBJECT TO THE PROPOSED SETTLEMENT:
The federal court will hold a hearing on the fairness of the proposed settlement on July 18, 2018 at 10 AM at the federal courthouse in Brooklyn, Eastern District of New York, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Courtroom 11A South, Brooklyn, New York 11201. Anyone desiring a copy of the settlement agreement may request a copy by contacting counsel for Plaintiffs' Counsel:


Zachary Shultz
Cardozo Bet Tzedek Legal Services
55 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10003
(212) 790-0384

JASA/Legal Services for the Elderly In Queens:
Donna Dougherty, Esq.
97-77 Queens Boulevard, Suite 600
Rego Park, NY 11374
(718) 286-1500

Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation Legal Services
Matthew J. Chachère, Esq.
45 Wadsworth Ave.
New York, NY 10033 (212) 822-8300.

Anyone wishing to make objections may either appear in person at the courtroom on the day and time listed above or may mail any objections to Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom at the Eastern District of New York, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York 11201. Any letter raising objections should note that the objections are being filed in the case of Pfeffer v. DOF.