SW Legal studies in Business

Holder of Tourist Visa Cannot Be a “Permanent Resident” of an Apartment in the U.S.
Description

New York high court held that a foreign citizen who holds a tourist visa cannot, by definition, be a permanent resident. Under New York City rent-control law, one cannot reside in a rent-controlled apartment unless one is a permanent resident. Hence, a tourist visa holder cannot stay in a rent-controlled apartment.

Topic Real and Personal Property
Key Words

Rent Control; Visa Status

C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts

Bianca Jagger (former wife of Mick Jagger) lived in a rent-controlled apartment in Manhattan. (News reports stated that she paid $4,000 a month, but the market value was $8,000 per month.) The landlord argued that Jagger had no right to keep the apartment because it was not occupied as her primary residence, as required by New York rent-control law. Due to confusion about the law, a question was certified to the high court of New York whether a tenant, as a holder of a B-2 tourist visa, could keep control of a rent-controlled apartment.

Decision

Question answered. Since Jagger held a B-2 tourist visa, which requires her to maintain permanent residence outside the United States that she had no intention of abandoning, she could not maintain a primary residence in a rent-controlled apartment in New York. Hence, the landlord could evict her and regain control of the premises.

Citation

Katz Park Avenue Corp. v. Jagger, 898 N.E.2d 17 (Ct. App., N.Y., 2008)

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