New York City’s Local Law 147 Takes Effect: Rental Buildings, Condos and Co-ops Must Adopt a Written Smoking Policy for Their Buildings By August 28, 2018

June 2018

New York City’s Local Law 147 requires all residential buildings with three or more units, including rental buildings, cooperatives and condominiums, to adopt a written smoking policy - no later than August 28, 2018.

Local Law 147 was created to protect residents from the dangers of secondhand smoke, but it’s important to note that the law does not require the smoking policy to have any restrictions, other than what is already required by law. A building’s smoking policy must be given to all tenants in writing, or posted in a visible location in the building; and violations can result in penalties of up to $2,000 for building owners.

Here are five points that all building owners of rentals, cooperatives or condominiums, should consider before the August 28 deadline:

  • Smoking in common areas of residential buildings (such as elevators, lobbies, hallways, rooftops) is already prohibited by law; this new ordinance requires building owners to address in their policy all indoor and outdoor areas of the premises and further establish whether smoking is allowed inside individual units. The policy shall apply to owners, tenants and their invitees on the premises.
     
  • The written policy must be formally adopted and, if applicable, added to the house rules or other condominium and cooperative documents of the building. The policy must be delivered or posted in a conspicuous place to its shareholders, unit owners, tenants and sublessees, as applicable, and updated with any material changes to such policy.
     
  • The building’s smoking policy must be in any future purchase or rental agreements, any leases and subleases, as applicable. Sponsors of cooperatives and condominiums should incorporate adherence to this policy in their form purchase agreements in their offering plans.
     
  • The building’s smoking policy should also address its procedures for addressing complaints and enforcing the policy.
     
  • Rent-stabilized or rent-controlled tenants in occupancy prior to the adoption of the building’s smoking policy are not obligated to comply with the building’s policy, but they must comply with what is already required by law. Additionally, non-rent regulated tenants already in occupancy of their unit at the time this policy is adopted are not obligated to comply with the building policy for the duration of their current lease or sublease, as applicable.

For more information on the issues in this alert, or other real estate matters, please contact:

Douglas P. Heller at +1 212 592 1454 or [email protected]
Ellen A. Menscher at +1 212 592 5975 or [email protected]errick.com

© 2018 Herrick, Feinstein LLP. This alert is provided by Herrick, Feinstein LLP to keep its clients and other interested parties informed of current legal developments that may affect or otherwise be of interest to them. The information is not intended as legal advice or legal opinion and should not be construed as such.