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East 13th Street Homesteaders’ Coalition v. Lower East Side Coalition Housing Development

Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York, First Department
646 N.Y.S.2d 324 (1996)


The occupants of several housing units on East 13th Street (plaintiffs) sued New York City (the city) (defendant), claiming title to their respective properties through adverse possession. The plaintiffs requested a preliminary injunction, prohibiting the city from evicting them from the property to rehabilitate the property and turn it into low-income housing units. The plaintiffs asserted that they had continuously occupied the property for the last ten years. The city presented proof that some of the properties were vacant during periods in the last 10 years and that the city had sealed the buildings several times in the last 10 years. The occupants of the units also changed several times during the last 10 years. The plaintiffs argued that all of the occupants were members of a coalition and, collectively, continuously occupied the units. The city submitted proof that, for some of the units, the vacating occupant and the new occupant did not have any contact at all. The trial court granted the preliminary injunction, and the city appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning

Dissent (Kupferman, J.)

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