Monthly Archives: November 2015

The Right of First Refusal: A Condominium Minefield

Real Property Law Section 339-v(2)(a) permits condominiums, in their by-laws, to include “provisions governing the alienation, conveyance, sale, leasing, purchase, ownership and occupancy of units[.]”.

Based thereon, most residential and commercial condominiums include, in their by-laws, a so-called “right of first refusal” – pursuant to which an owner, before selling a unit, must offer the apartment to the condominium or to a contiguous owner on the same terms and conditions as the contemplated third party transaction.

It is quite rare and unusual for a condominium to, in fact, exercise the right.  However, two recent decisions by the Appellate Division, First Department, are instructive as to the issues that may arise when a condominium elects to do so.

Bittens v. Board of Mgrs. of the Octavia Condominium, 2013 NY Slip Op 33218(U) (December 17, 2013) and 2015 NY Slip Op 07540 (October 15, 2015) Continue reading