Is It Possible to Evict Your Roommate in New York City?

The short answer to the question is yes, you can evict your roommate from your New York apartment.

Before you can do so and serve proper notice, you must have just cause for kicking them out. Not contributing towards rent payment or violating lease terms are some of the reasons which are considered just cause for eviction. On the contrary, neglecting to do chores or leaving a pile of mess — among other vexing roommate behaviors — often do not constitute just cause.

After making sure there is indeed just cause, you have to prove that you have the legal power to initiate an eviction. There are specific circumstances where this is possible.

You Hold Master Tenant Status

There are situations where the lease agreement is just between you and your landlord — your roommate is not a party to the contract. In this scenario, you are the master tenant your roommate is considered as a month-to-month tenant.

As master tenant, you should give them 30 days’ notice in writing to move out. If they don’t comply within that period, you can move for formal eviction, which is otherwise known as a roommate holdover proceeding.

Additionally, you still have the power to evict if a roommate entered into a sublease agreement with you — even though he or she is not part of the primary lease contract with the landlord.

However, if there is no lease agreement in the first place, but you’re the one who regularly sends rent payment to the landlord, you are still considered the master tenant.

Situations Where the Landlord May Need to Intervene

There are other circumstances where you don’t hold the power to evict. In such cases, the landlord may step in to settle issues among tenants.

If you and your roommate signed the lease agreement with the landlord, you can’t initiate the eviction process in court. The only remedy is to bring up the matter to your landlord, who has the power to evict in this scenario.

In cases where there is no lease agreement, but both you and your roommate pay the landlord individually, you still can’t evict a troublesome roommate by yourself. The landlord would still be the one to initiate the eviction.

Serving Notice to a Roommate

Eviction notice

Technically, you’re not allowed to serve a notice of termination by yourself. This is because you are partial to the outcome of the case.

You may approach the landlord or property owner and request for them to do it. However, they may take some time to do so due to busy schedules. For some, the experience may prove quite stressful to deal with.

A better option is to hire professional process servers from Serve Index LLC. We are a highly experienced agency when it comes to tenant process serving in New York. Below are a couple of reasons why tenants and landlords constantly seek out our services:

  • We have a high success rate and can deliver documents to even the most evasive tenants. We secure proof of receipt every time to ensure notice was properly served.
  • We are specially trained to handle difficult situations with respondents.
  • We comply with the latest rules and guidelines around the service of process.
  • We are truly neutral and have no vested interests in a particular outcome for any case.

Talk to Serve Index LLC Process Servers Today

If you’re living with a troublesome or non-compliant roommate in New York, we’re more than willing to help you. Call us toll free via 1-888-994-6339 or send us an email at for any inquiries.

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