Jennifer L. Alexander, Esq.
Jennifer L. Alexander is a Partner at Griffin Alexander, PC whose practice concentrates on matters involving New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania Landlord-Tenant Law, Community Association Law, and Collections Law. She also handles Commercial Real Estate Transactions, Land Use and Municipal Court matters. She begins most days appearing in Landlord-Tenant Court or appearing on behalf of community associations in litigation, providing legal advice and guidance through the day and ends most of her days representing communities in board meetings.
Under Ms. Alexander’s leadership in the Landlord Tenant Department, the firm represents local, national corporate and individual landlords. Representation includes non-payment cases, "for-cause” cases (e.g. habitability claims, security deposits, lease violations), lease drafting and statutory compliance. Ms. Alexander regularly provides lease reviews and lease drafting for her clients to ensure they are in compliance with new laws and fit the needs of her individual clients. She is also well versed in rent control laws, affordable housing requirements and what is necessary for capital surcharge applications.
Ms. Alexander has successfully handled several housing discrimination suits on behalf of landlords filed by tenants, and provides procedures and recommendations to help limit landlord exposure to Federal Fair Housing violations. She also appears in court related to contract disputes for both community associations and landlords and when her clients are cited for violations.
Similarly, Ms. Alexander represents community associations, providing guidance through the transition process from developer control to homeowner control and serves as general counsel for community association needs.
Ms. Alexander appears before Planning and Zoning Boards in support of community association applications, as well as in opposition to applications which are contrary to a client’s interests. Recently, she successfully handled a planning board application to add more parking at one of her communities within a municipality known to oppose such requests. She handles community association loan applications when associations secure loans or lines of credit.
Ms. Alexander also assists communities in rule making and drafting amendments to promote community living. She has also assisted in contested association elections and helps to ensure that associations are in full compliance with the Radburn Act. Additionally, Ms. Alexander assists community associations in negotiating Municipal Services Agreements to insure her clients receive the services they are entitled to or the reimbursement equivalent.
After filing an injunction, Ms. Alexander recently obtained a court order to stop the New Jersey Department of Transportation from blasting during a road construction project on Route 46 in Passaic County. The injunction successfully prevented likely damage to condominium association property that would have been incurred by the blasting – the homes referenced were built on a cliff with retaining walls constructed on fill.
Ms. Alexander negotiated an easement agreement with a municipality to ensure culvert repairs and restriction on easement rights so as to not impede on her client's property. Additionally, she assisted a homeowner in Morris County by negotiating with the municipality to adjust easements on their property. This ensured that a culvert was built to facilitate water run-off away from the property.
Ms. Alexander was also successful in having a tenant evicted for not paying rent and subsequently mediating a harassment charge initiated by the tenant against the landlord. She also oversees the Collections Department, which works on behalf of community association clients to collect payments of delinquent maintenance fees and charges.
Ms. Alexander regularly speaks on community association topics at Community Association Institute – New Jersey Chapter seminars, the annual NJ Cooperator Expo, the NJAA, the POA and for management companies. She also lectures and delivers seminars on Federal Fair Housing regulations and other issues of concern to landlords. She hosted an ICLE Webinar, entitled "Bankruptcy Basics for the Residential Real Estate Lawyer." Additionally, she is honored to regularly present at NJAA, CAM and CAI Seminars, including "Fair Housing and Beyond" and "The Board Leadership Development Workshop". Ms. Alexander also was invited to be a guest speaker at Rutgers Real Estate Center.
Ms. Alexander assists clients in real estate matters. She specializes in commercial real estate transactions, such as the sale and development of real estate properties, refinancing, and purchases and sales of investment properties. She recently secured significant long-term commercial leases for a landlord with properties in Jersey City, Hoboken and Morristown. Additionally, she negotiated a municipal service agreement for a condominium client increasing their ability to have more snow clearing and lighting, while arranging for the town to take over trash removal.
Additionally, Ms. Alexander successfully handles over 100 evictions per month (Griffin Alexander, PC handles over approximately 300 evictions per month in total). She was recently successful in having residents not in compliance with 55 and older requirements vacate a unit in a condominium complex.
Ms. Alexander is admitted to practice in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. She is also admitted to practice in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey and the Middle District of Pennsylvania. She received her law degree from The University of Toledo College of Law and her B.A. from Rutgers University, Douglas College.
Ms. Alexander is a member of the America Bar Association; the New Jersey Bar Association; the New York Bar Association; the Pennsylvania Bar Association; the Community Associations Institute - New Jersey Chapter; the National Apartment Association; the New Jersey Apartment Association; and the NJ Cooperator. She also currently holds a position on the Advisory Board for the Center for Real Estate at Rutgers University, where she mentors students in the Mentor/Mentee program. Ms. Alexander also holds a position on the NJAA Legislative Committee.
Ms. Alexander is also a Mediator through the New Jersey Community Associations Institute (CAI).
News & Announcements
EXTENDED LIEN PRIORITY TO EXTEND ASSOCIATION BUDGETS
January 17, 2020
A new bill, passed on April 29, 2019 (N.J.S.A. 46:8B-21), signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy, extends lien priority for condominium associations and creates similar lien priority protections for homeowner associations. For many years, the New Jersey Condominium Act has permitted the filing of liens against condominium units when assessments remain unpaid. Homeowner association, because they were not included in the Act, provided for the filing of liens in their governing documents. These liens served as the basis for foreclosure against units in serious arrears. The ability to file liens and foreclose provided a substantial benefit to the fiscal stability of community associations throughout the State. Without the ability to file liens and foreclose on them, abandoned units, units falling into serious disrepair due to owner inability to afford to pay maintenance or afford repairs, and units in which residents are otherwise judgment-proof, would substantially increase the monetary burden on those who do pay their maintenance fees, and would reduce the marketability of all Units in the community.
BILL PASSED IN NEW JERSEY REGARDING WHEN TENANTS ARE REQUIRED TO MAKE PAYMENTS AFTER EVICTION AND/OR LOCKOUT
January 17, 2020
A new bill titled NJ S3124, was signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy on January 13, 2020. This bill requires landlords to allow tenants to pay rent up to three business days after an eviction order or lockout is executed and requires landlords to accept rent payments by any means.
New Legislation Regarding Tenants Payments to Landlords in New Jersey
January 15, 2020
The new bill is titled S1493 Sca (1R) and it was signed into law by Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday, January 13, 2020. Generally, the new legislation aims at landlords who require renters to agree to automatic monthly debit payments as a condition of entering a new lease or renewing a lease. The new legislation prohibits landlords from requiring residential tenants to pay rent and other related charges through electronic funds transfer and it requires landlords to provide receipts for cash payments.
New York Housing Right to Counsel
January 13, 2020
New York City has established a city-funded right to counsel for low-income tenants facing eviction proceedings. The right to counsel law, Local Law 136 of 2017, amended the New York City Administrative Code § 26-1301 et seq. The law now requires New York City to build up the capacity of the City’s nonprofit legal services organizations over five years so that by 2022, the nonprofit organizations will be able to provide attorney representation for every low-income household in New York City that is subject to eviction in Housing Court.
RESPONDING TO A LAWSUIT
December 18, 2019
Lawsuits arising from claims between landlords and tenants, or between community associations and unit owners, are unfortunately not uncommon. Whether acting as the Plaintiff or Defendant, it is important to understanding the basics of each type of suit before initiating or replying.
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