Pursuant to the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019, the legislature has codified what a landlord may charge as a late fee.
Real Property Law §238-a, entitled “Limitation on fee” provides that in a residential dwelling:
“(2) No landlord, lessor, sub-lessor or grantor may demand any payment, fee, orcharge for the late payment of rent unless the payment of rent has not been made within five days of the date it was due, and such payment, fee, or charge shall not exceed fifty dollars or 5 percent of the monthly rent, whichever is less”
Your landlord cannot sue you for late fees in an eviction proceeding. However, if your lease provides for late fees, and those fees are in line with the provisions of Real Property Law §238-a(2), your landlord can sue you in a plenary action for those late fees.
When does my landlord NOT have a right to collect late?
If you never entered into a written lease, your landlord does not have a right to collect late fees, even if you orally agreed to pay late fees.If your lease provides for late fees in excess of the amounts listed in Real Property Law §238-a(2).