Russo v. Kiefer, 2021-21285

CourtNew York Justice Court
Writing for the CourtRichard Clarino, J.
PartiesStephanie Russo, Petitioner v. Melanie A. Kiefer, WILLIAM D. WOLF, DAVID KIEFER and WILLIAM D. WOLF, JR., Respondents.
Decision Date25 October 2021
Docket Number21050217,2021-21285

Stephanie Russo, Petitioner
v.

Melanie A. Kiefer, WILLIAM D. WOLF, DAVID KIEFER and WILLIAM D. WOLF, JR., Respondents.

No. 2021-21285

Docket No. 21050217

Justice Court of the Town of Newburgh, Orange County

October 25, 2021


OLIVER BUDDE, ESQ.

Attorney for Petitioner

MELANIE A, KIEFER

Respondent Pro Se

WILLIAM D. WOLF

Respondent Pro Se

DAVID KIEFER

Respondent Pro Se

WILLIAM D. WOLF, JR.

Respondent Pro Se

Richard Clarino, J.

On October 7, 2021, a hearing was held in reference to this summary proceeding to determine the validity of the Declaration of COVID Hardship submitted by each respondent. Petitioner was represented by Oliver Budde, Esq. Respondents appeared pro se and each testified on his or her own behalf.

Each respondent testified at the hearing as follows:

RESPONDENT MELANIE KIEFER

Melanie Kiefer testified that neither she nor any member of her household suffered medically from COVID. In September, 2019 following the termination of her cleaning business that ended in August, 2019, she applied for Social Security disability caused by non-COVID illness and her lack of income was exacerbated by her providing care to her elderly grandparents.

Notwithstanding her testimony concerning diminished income, Ms. Kiefer admitted that she recently settled a medical malpractice lawsuit commenced in Ulster County Supreme Court and received the sum of $389, 000.00, presently a liquid asset.

RESPONDENT DAVID KIEFER

David Kiefer testified that he is employed as a full-time electrician, works 40 hours per week and earns approximately $800.00 per week.

RESPONDENT WILLIAM WOLF

William Wolfe testified that he is a tree surgeon and, since 2020, as a result of the COVID shutdowns, his income came to a halt. Nothing was presented by him, either documentary evidence or otherwise, to support his conclusory claim that he had no income in and since 2020. Nor did respondent testify or show proof that he or his family applied for or received cash assistance, assistance from the supplemental nutrition assistance program, supplemental social security, income from New York State Disability, income from the home energy assistance program, income from unemployment insurance or benefits under State and Federal law or any other public or private funds.. The court notes that on September 27, 2021, it sent a letter to all respondents advising them that the above-described income would be considered relevant...

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