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Tenant Evicted For Damage Caused by Subtenant

November 09, 2018

WILLIAM H. MONE reports on a recent published decision from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division.

A New Jersey man was evicted from his residential apartment by order of the Superior Court because of the actions of his subtenant. The man allowed the subtenant to occupy the apartment for a six-month period in 2016. During that time the subtenant caused severe damage to the rear door of the apartment and the surrounding molding. The Landlord brought the eviction suit after serving a notice to quit on both the man and his subtenant.


The man appealed the judgment of the trial court, arguing that only the subtenant could be evicted from the apartment because he was the one who caused the damage that gave rise to the eviction proceedings. The man relied on the Anti-Eviction Act and claimed that the statute only permitted the eviction of the person(s) whose actions gave rise to the eviction proceedings, and that the language of the Act did not broadly apply to all lessees and tenants.


The Appellate Division rejected this argument, holding that the Anti-Eviction Act permitted the eviction of any person who allowed the damage to occur to the premises as well as any person who actually caused the damage. The Appellate Division concluded that the man was subject to eviction because he allowed the subtenant to occupy the premises and thereby allowed the subtenant to damage the rear door and molding of the apartment.


Please contact William H. Mone if you have any questions or need assistance in connection with this subject.