New York, NY (PRWEB) June 03, 2013
Sanchez & Polovetsky, PLLC, (http://www.spnylaw.com) a midtown Manhattan law firm focusing its practice in eminent domain law, is pleased to announce a groundbreaking decision in favor of its client, KARP ASSOCIATES, INC. ("KARP"), in Commissioner of Transportation, As Agent of the People of the State of New York v. KARP Associates, Inc. (Civ. Ct. Queens Co. Index No. 10749/13). KARP is the largest manufacturer of access panel doors in the world. Since 1956, KARP has operated its main factory (approximately 30,000 square feet) at 54-54 43rd Street in Maspeth, Queens.
According to public records on file with the Queens County Clerk, in September of 2010 the State of New York (the “State”) and the State Department of Transportation appropriated KARP’s factory, together with all of its trade fixtures/equipment, by eminent domain in order to make way for the replacement of the Kosciusko Bridge. Under the law, KARP is considered a condemnee that is entitled to just compensation as a consequence of the State’s forcible taking of its property.
In August of 2012 KARP’s attorneys, Sanchez & Polovetsky, PLLC, filed a $45 million claim against the State in the New York Court of Claims under Claim No. 121590, seeking just compensation on KARP’s behalf. That Claim is still pending before the Honorable Judge David Weinstein, and as per KARP’s attorneys, will probably be scheduled for a trial sometime in late 2013 or early 2014.
As shown by court documents on file at the New York City Civil Court, Queens County, on March 13, 2013 the State commenced a separate eviction action against KARP in the City Civil Court, Landlord Tenant Division, seeking to force KARP out of its factory. KARP’s attorneys, Sanchez & Polovetsky, PLLC, filed a motion to dismiss the State’s Petition-and won. On May 17, 2013, after oral argument, Judge Terrence O’Connor of the New York City Civil Court issued a groundbreaking decision in KARP’s favor and dismissed the State’s eviction Petition, in its entirety.
In his unprecedented decision in Comm. of Transportation v. KARP, Judge O’Connor agreed with Sanchez & Polovetsky, PLLC’s legal arguments and ruled that §1809-A of the New York City Civil Court Act does not allow the State to sue as a Plaintiff/Petitioner in the City Civil Courts. Judge O’Connor also ruled that, because the State receives federal funding for the Kosciusko Bridge Replacement Project, the State was required to comply with federal law and serve KARP with a 90-day, rather than only a 30-day, Notice To Quit the premises.
According to KARP's attorneys, Judge O’Connor’s decision to dismiss the State’s eviction Petition marks an important new precedent in the field of eminent domain/condemnation law. By ruling that the State has no standing to sue in the City Civil Courts, any and all eviction proceedings that the State has filed, or may file in the future, are void as a matter of law. This judicial decision means that the State has no right to bring an eviction proceeding arising out of a condemnation/eminent domain action in the City Civil Courts.
“KARP runs a massive factory operation and employs over 100 union employees. If our client was forced to immediately vacate the premises, the consequences would have been catastrophic because KARP would be forced to immediately cease all production, permanently lay off all of its 100 plus union employees, and close its doors forever and cease to exist,” says Philip Sanchez, a partner at Sanchez & Polovetsky.
Pursuant to statute, the only judicial forums where the State has consented to be sued are the Court of Claims and the New York State Supreme Court, but not the New York City Civil Court. By bringing this eviction proceeding in City Civil Court, the State attempted to unilaterally empower itself to act as a Plaintiff but never a defendant, in violation of due process of law, according to KARP's attorneys.
“The State of New York went too far this time by commencing suit in a Court where it has no right to sue. In a clear overreach of power, the State obviously expected the Court to simply defer to its position and grant its unlawful Petition simply because it is the State of New York and if it says so, it must be true. Thankfully, we were able to stop the State’s attempt to illegally evict KARP,” says Jennifer Polovetsky, a partner at Sanchez & Polovetsky.
ABOUT SANCHEZ & POLOVETSKY, PLLC
Sanchez & Polovetsky, PLLC is a midtown Manhattan based law firm, with offices at The Commerce Building, which focuses its practice in eminent domain law. The attorneys at the firm have over 26 years of combined legal experience in both the public and private sectors. Jennifer Polovetsky, Esq., who appeared on behalf of KARP in the State eviction proceedings, is the firm's founding Member and is a seasoned litigator with extensive experience in all aspects of Eminent Domain Law and Real Estate Law. Philip A. Sanchez, Esq. became a Member of the firm in 2012, bringing with him over a decade of legal experience in both the public and private sectors. To learn more about the firm and its attorneys, visit http://www.spnylaw.com
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