Every once in a while, the court’s administrative office decides that a revision – or even an entire overhaul – of a longstanding form is required. This may be because the law, the procedure, some information related to the form has changed, or merely that the powers that be decide that the form just needs to be updated. It is not an unusual occurrence and, over the course of 130 years, Blumberg has experienced many of these changes and has risen to the challenge of each one!
As part of its vast array of forms, Blumberg has forms used for and recognized by the Housing Court of the City of New York. Among these forms are the postcards sent to tenants notifying them of either a nonpayment proceeding which has been filed against them for collection of unpaid rent (Blumberg postcard form #212) or of a “holdover” proceeding, an eviction proceeding instituted against tenants who have not vacated the premises after a lease has expired, terminated by the Landlord or been deemed terminated by a court (Blumberg postcard form #216).
Also among the forms used by the Housing Court is the Notice of Petition form (Blumberg form #207D), a full size (8 1/2” x 11”) form which notifies a tenant that a landlord has brought a lawsuit for eviction for nonpayment of rent. This form has also been revised and the draft includes an additional Instruction page (CIV-LT-92), a document that was available at the Housing Court Clerk’s office. This instruction sheet includes a list of defenses that might be raised by Tenants defending a Summary Proceeding.
When we were about to publish the revised Notice of Petition, the Office of Court Administration alerted us that the Instruction page was under further review and that we should not include it with the revised Notice. The Housing Court is now accepting both the prior form dated 10-97, which is available for downloading at blumberglegalforms.com, or the revised form dated 1-18 available in paper at blumberg.com.
As is often the case when such major changes are made, the process can take many months. We were first alerted about the changes over a year ago, with a notification by the court that a change in the postcards would be forthcoming, followed by an initial sample template of the changes. Not only was the text revised, but also the font and the actual size of the postcards themselves were changed. We published the revised postcards in April (dated 4-17). The story does not end here. Towards the end of 2017 we were advised that there were further changes to be made. The postcards were revised again and published with the date 1-18. Again, Blumberg’s experience in not only creating its forms but rapidly responding to administrative changes came into play. Each time the process took just a few weeks to complete.
As is often the case in an administrative environment, additional eyes may wish to weigh in on the changes, so the court postponed the effective date until all those with an interest could make their opinions heard. Eventually, a year after Blumberg was first informed that the Housing Court postcards going to be amended, the 1-18 versions are in circulation. However, The Notice of Petition, as mentioned above, has only provisionally been approved.
For more information about the Notice of Petition please see the latest OCA Memorandum.