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NYC Student Tenant Rights

A guide for NYC-based college students navigating the wide world of housing law, from dorms to sub-leases, bad landlords to worse roommates.

Conducting Legal Research

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This guide provides many resources to help users find information about landlord tenant law relevant to New York City college students. But how can you best make use of this information to solve specific problems? The resources below provide guidance on the legal research process, including how to identify your question/problem, where to look for the appropriate resources, and how to evaluate information for accuracy, currency, and quality.

How to Research a Legal Problem: A Guide for Non-Lawyers. 

You have a legal problem, but you don't know where to start. This helpful guide from the American Association of Law Libraries provides step-by-step instructions for non-lawyers conducting legal research.

Evaluating Free Legal Information 

Glossaries of Legal Terms

Bilingual and Multilingual Legal Dictionaries 

A guide published by librarians at Washington University, containing links to legal dictionaries in Chinese, Spanish, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Russian.

Translating Justice: An English to Spanish Glossary 

How do you say "Adjudicate" in Spanish? This English-to-Spanish glossary developed by the Vera Institute of Justice, a private, nonprofit legal organization, provides translations for common legal terms.

Una guía legal de inglés a español del Instituto Vera.

English to Chinese Legal Glossary 

A glossary of common legal terms translated from English to Chinese by the New York City Courts



A robust, free legal dictionary and encyclopedia published by the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School. Certain topics contain a full overview and links to related articles. Also available in Spanish.


Government Sites

Government published information on housing law and tenant & landlord law, published by the State and/or City of New York.

New York State Tenant Laws - 

Rules of the City of New York 

NYC Housing Resource Center 

Information on fighting eviction or tenant harassment, affordable housing, rental assistance, reporting a housing complaint, and finding emergency shelter from See "Tenant's Rights FAQs" for answers to common questions regarding landlord/tenant law.

NYC Tenant Resources 

Tenants Rights Guide 

Finding Legal Help

If things get to the point where you need the help of a legal professional, there are many organizations that provide free or reduced fee legal services to New York City residents with demonstrated financial need. Below is a list of resources that will help you find affordable legal help.

Legal Services NYC 
Eviction Intervention Center 
City Bar Justice Center 

Stats and Facts

NYC Open Data

The NYC Open Data portal is "an opportunity to engage New Yorkers in the information that is produced and used by City government." This website, published by the City of New York, provides thousands of data sets on topics such as traffic, crime, 311, and housing. For example, you can download a dataset of Housing and Maintanence Code Violations or Housing Litigations and use the built-in tool to create data visualizations.

A user-friendly data hub by the NYU Furman Center, a research center for housing and urban policy based in New York City. It includes property-level housing subsidy information and neighborhood-level information on housing markets, home affordability, land use, demographics, and neighborhood conditions.

Tracking Evictions and Rent Stabilization in NYC - ProPublica

Nonprofit news source ProPublica used data from the New York City Public Advocate's Office and NYC Department of Finance to map over 450,000 NYC eviction cases filed between 2013-2015. Users can use this interactive map to look up their building for recent eviction cases