LawHelpNY.orgNew York

Taking your landlord to court for repairs

Authored By: Legal Services NYC
Read this in:
Spanish / Español
Have you tried to get your landlord to make repairs and nothing has happened? Basics to know Create your court papers What does it mean to serve the court papers? In an HP case, there are four steps to serving court papers. Be prepared for your day in housing court. Remember your documents. Need more help?

Have you tried to get your landlord to make repairs and nothing has happened?

You have a right to a home in good condition. If you have completed these three steps, and your landlord is still not making repairs, you may need to take your landlord to court. Explore this page by clicking on the tabs (above) to find out how to file a housing repairs case. 

Basics to know


You can sue your landlord in housing court to force them to make the repairs.

This is a special kind of case called a "Housing Part" case, or more commonly, an "HP action" or "HP case." 

An HP action is a case that you file against your landlord when the landlord will not make repairs or provide services. You are asking the court to order the landlord to make repairs or provide services. An HP action can be filed by just you or it can be filed by a group of tenants in your building. It can be filed to correct violations in your apartment or in the public areas of your building.

For more information about HP actions, visit Housing Court Answers.

To continue, click on Step 1.

Create your court papers

To start your court case, you must prepare the proper paperwork. 

If you do not know what paperwork to create, go to Law Help Interactive, an online court form guide that will walk you through how to prepare the forms you will need. This link will take you to LawHelpInteractive:

Create Court Papers to Sue Your Landlord for Repairs

(If you do not have time to complete the process all at once, you can save your work and return at another time.)

This website will help you prepare documents to present a strong case in court: 

Build a Case History that can be presented as evidence in court

File your forms

File your forms at the courthouse in the county where you live:

Bronx Housing Court
1118 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY 10456
HP Clerk, Lobby, Window 7

Kings Civil Court
141 Livingston St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201
HP Clerk, Room 202, Window 10

New York Civil Court
111 Centre St.
New York, NY 10013
HP Clerk, Room 225, Window 5

Queens Civil Court
89-17 Sutphin Blvd.
Jamaica, NY 11436
HP Clerk, Room 209

Richmond Civil Court
927 Castleton Ave.
Staten Island, NY 10310
HP Clerk, Basement, L&T Window

Once you have filed your forms, you will need to serve your landlord.

Go to the next tab (above) to learn how to serve your landlord.

What does it mean to serve the court papers?

Serving court papers means delivering all relevant court forms to the parties in the case. 

  • You do this AFTER you have filed the court papers to start your case (see tab above 1. Court Forms).
  • Serving the papers is mandatory. Your case cannot move forward until you have served the court papers.

In an HP case, there are four steps to serving court papers.

Please read this PDF for step by step instructions on How to Serve the Court Papers in a Lawsuit for Repairs

Here is a brief outline of the PDF linked above:

1. Serve your landlord (and the management company)

  • You can do this by Certified Mail Return Receipt or by hand delivery.
  • If you are also serving the management company, you will need to mail or hand deliver a separate copy to them.

2. Serve the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD)

  • Mail a copy of the documents by Certified Mail Return Receipt to:

Department of Housing Preservation and Development

Housing Litigation Bureau

100 Gold St.

New York, NY 10038

3.  Fill out the Affidavit of Service

  • What is an Affidavit of Service? An Affidavit of Service is a written form that says how the papers were served.
  • This form is filed with the court after you have served the papers to all parties. 
  • You need to fill out a separate Affidavit of Service for each party you served. 
  • These forms must be notarized, so do not sign the Affidavit of Service until you are in front of a notary.

4. Take the signed and notarized Affidavits of Service with you to court on your first court date. 

Be prepared for your day in housing court.

Click on the links below to know what to expect at Housing Court, and our top tips to help you prepare. 

►What to expect on your day in housing court

►Legal Terms You Might Hear in Court

►12 Things You Should Know about Your Rights in Housing Court

There are Housing Court Navigators, Landlord-Tenant Clerks, and volunteer attorneys that can help you at the courthouse. 

 Before you go to court, know who can help you in Housing Court, click here to read more. 

Remember your documents.

You can bring to court anything you believe will help your case, but there are a few documents you should absolutely have with you.

► Signed Affidavits of Service

► Here is a helpful Document Checklist to be sure you have everything you need before your court date. 

Need more help?

You don't have to deal with a housing court problem on your own. Finding free and confidential legal help can be as easy as a click or phone call away.

► Call Housing Court Answers at 212-962-4795 from 9 am-5 pm, Tuesday-Thursday.

► Visit the Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development (ANHD) website for housing help and resources.

If you need more information, you can chat with us for free. Just click on the LiveHelp button on the bottom right corner of this page.

Last Review and Update: Jun 06, 2017

LiveHelp is trying to contact an operator...