Matter of Santiago-Monteverde

Debtor lived in a rent-stabilized apartment for over forty years. Debtor filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and listed the value of her unexpired rent-stabilized lease as personal property exempt from the bankruptcy estate under N.Y. Debt. & Cred. Law 282(2) as a “local public assistance benefit.” The bankruptcy court struck the claimed exemption, concluding that the value of the lease did not qualify as an exempt local public assistance benefit. The district court affirmed. Debtor appealed, arguing that the value of her lease was a local public assistance benefit that was exempted from her bankruptcy estate. The Second Circuit certified a question to the New York Court of Appeals regarding the issue. The Court of Appeals answered that section 282(2) exempts a debtor-tenant’s interest in a rent-stabilized lease. View "Matter of Santiago-Monteverde" on Justia Law