Community: City of Hoboken Prevails in Dismissing Class Action Lawsuit
Superior Court Judge Mary K. Costello, the Presiding Judge of the Civil Division in Hudson County, has dismissed a class action lawsuit against the City surrounding the administration of its rent control ordinance.
The suit was brought in 2010 by Gina DeNardo who alleged that the City misapplied the ordinance over a number of years to the detriment of landlords. The City has vigorously defended against this class action lawsuit for the last three years and steadfastly held to its position that the City and its officers have followed and administered the rent control ordinance in good faith for all resident landlords and tenants alike.
Over the last two decades, rent control in the City has been the subject of numerous court cases. Accordingly, the City argued in its summary judgment motion that it had faithfully applied the ordinance in light of the outcomes of those lawsuits. Judge Costello agreed with Hoboken that the Mayor and Rent Regulation Officer faithfully administered the ordinance in light of the lawsuits that have guided its application. She dismissed the class action lawsuit in its entirety based upon qualified immunity grounds stemming from the City’s good faith reliance on court decisions that guided the scope of the ordinance.
"I am very pleased with this decision that confirms that the City has acted properly with regard to the administration of our rent control laws,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “This latest court victory demonstrates once again the importance of making the necessary investment to vigorously defend the City’s interests.”
The City was represented by Victor A. Afanador and Jeffrey A. Shooman of Lite DePalma Greenberg, LLC in Newark.