Winter v. Del Regno, 2020-830 RO C

CourtNew York Supreme Court — Appellate Term
Citation155 N.Y.S.3d 528 (Table),73 Misc.3d 138 (A)
Docket Number2020-830 RO C
Parties Carolyn WINTER, Appellant, v. Charles DEL REGNO, Respondent.
Decision Date24 November 2021

73 Misc.3d 138 (A)
155 N.Y.S.3d 528 (Table)

Carolyn WINTER, Appellant,
Charles DEL REGNO, Respondent.

2020-830 RO C

Supreme Court, Appellate Term, New York, Second Dept., 9 & 10 Jud. Dist.

Decided on November 24, 2021

Carolyn Winter, appellant pro se.

Charles Del Regno, respondent pro se (no brief filed).


ORDERED that the judgment is affirmed, without costs.

Plaintiff commenced this small claims action against her landlord, for the return of her security deposit. At the nonjury trial, the evidence established that plaintiff and defendant had entered into a lease agreement from June, 2018 through May, 2020 for the downstairs of defendant's home, and that they entered into a subsequent agreement to permit plaintiff to sublease the downstairs, with plaintiff responsible for the $2,000 monthly rent. In April of 2020, plaintiff, through Airbnb, subleased the premises to Claudia and Ashley Johnson, who failed to move out after their two-week term had expired. At the expiration of plaintiff's lease in May of 2020, she commenced this action to recover her security deposit. Defendant stated that plaintiff owed him rent for April and May of 2020, and filed a counterclaim during the trial (see UJCA 1803 [c] ). Plaintiff disputed defendant's assertion that April's rent was not paid. Plaintiff withdrew her action and stated that defendant could apply her security deposit to May's rent. The court stated that the security deposit could not be used for rent because "you're still renting that apartment." The court then found that defendant was entitled to two months’ rent and awarded him $3,000 on his counterclaim. Plaintiff appeals.

In a small claims action, our review is limited to a determination of whether "substantial justice has ... been done between the parties according to the rules and principles of substantive law" ( UJCA 1807 ; see UJCA 1804 ; Ross v Friedman , 269 AD2d 584 [2000] ; Williams v Roper , 269 AD2d 125, 126 [2000] ). Furthermore, the determination of a trier of fact as to issues of credibility is given substantial deference, as a trial court's...

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