A criminal history can affect your eligibility for both public housing and, if a landlord conducts a background check, private housing. An arrest – even before anyone is found guilty – can often trigger eviction of you or your entire household from public or private housing.
Federally Subsidized Housing(NYCHA & Section 8)
Federally subsidized housing includes all public housing developments (such as NYCHA in New York City and RHA in Rochester) and Section 8. Rules in subsidized housing can be very strict, and even minor arrests or criminal convictions can affect your right to stay in public housing. This section includes information about “Admissions” – or the rules guiding when your criminal conviction might prevent you from living in public housing, even if your family lives there, and about “Termination of Tenancy” – or eviction based on criminal justice involvement. Most of the information here is specific to the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) and to Section 8 administered by NYCHA. To find out about the laws specific to your city or county use LawHelp/NY (www.lawhelp.org/ny) to find a housing legal services provider in your area.
Admissions- Getting into housing with a criminal record
Public housing agencies and Section 8 providers can and do obtain criminal records of applicants and tenants. Much of the information in this section is based on How to Get Section 8 or Public Housing Even With a Criminal Record, a publication of the Legal Action Center.
Hat Tip to:
- Appeals Court Rules NYCHA Can Evict Tenants Who Violate Income Requirement (newyork.cbslocal.com)
- Public Housing Safety Policy Can Hit Whole Family (abcnews.go.com)
- EXCLUSIVE: Councilman wants security locks, cameras for NYCHA (nydailynews.com)
- Can NYCHA Be Saved? (citylimits.org)
- Residents Evicted for Others’ Crimes (on.aol.com)