Do Gay Life Partners Get Remedial Protections of the Rent Stabilization Code ?
In Knafo v. Ching, N.Y.L.J., Dec. 6, 2000, p. 28, c. 2 (Civ. Ct. N. Y. Co.) the court held that the spousal exemption of 9 N.Y.C.R.R. 2524.4(a)(2) is intended to include gay life partners as well:
This court finds that [ 2524.4(a)(2)] does apply because the respondents are nontraditional spouses, entitled to protection as such under relevant appellate case law... All that separates them from traditional spouses is the fact that they are of the same sex and therefore cannot legally marry.
At a time when our City prohibits discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodation on the basis of sexual orientation, N. Y. C. Admin. Code 8-101, and when our society recognizes nontraditional partnerships for the purposes of health benefit coverage and for myriad other purposes, it would truly be anomalous to deny this couple the remedial protections of the Rent Stabilization Code provision clearly designed for individuals in their circumstances simply because they are not legally married.