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New York Law Aims to Care for Pets Left Behind in Evictions

December 24, 2018 Posted in Landlord/Tenant Law

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed the “No Pet Gets Left Behind Law” to protect pets from being abandoned after an eviction occurs.

In many instances, people are not home when they are evicted from a premises.  This situation caused one tenant to be unable to go into the apartment and retrieve his dog following a legal lockout.  The dog was unfortunately left in the apartment for two days before the tenant was allowed in to retrieve his pet. 

Under the old law, animals such as dogs, cats, birds or fish were treated like non-living property. That meant that animals can be left behind for days or even abandoned.

Under the new “No Pet Gets Left Behind Law” (S.7388B/A.8684B), an officer executing an eviction warrant must check the property for companion animals and coordinate the safe removal of such animals with the evictee. If the officers can’t find those individuals, they must coordinate with an animal shelter or Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to ensure the pets are cared for.

What does this mean for Landlords?

Landlords are now asked to submit a Presence of Animal(s) – Landlord Inquiry Form to the Marshals executing the eviction warrant.  This form lets the Marshals know whether there are pets present in the apartment and if so, the name and contact number of the tenant so that the Marshal can coordinate the safe removal of the animal with the tenant.

Speak With an Attorney

If you are seeking to evict a tenant that owns pets and have questions regarding your responsibility as a landlord under this new law, please do not hesitate to contact our office.

Here at Griffin Alexander, P.C., our attorneys have decades of combined experience handling disputes related to New York landlord tenant law.  We are therefore well-positioned to guide you successfully through the eviction process, from the procedural issues associated with notification and service, to the complicated legal concerns typical of a dispute.

Call (973) 366-1188 to get connected to an experienced attorney today.

The information in this Client Alert is provided solely for information purposes. It should not be construed as legal advice on any specific matter and is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based upon particular circumstances.  Each legal matter is unique, and prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.


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