Board Interview Is Delayed
By Jay Romano
We are trying to buy a Manhattan co-op. The board of directors has had our package for nearly two months but hasn’t yet scheduled an interview. Our apartment lease is running out and it is too late to renew it, so we have to find a new rental within the next few weeks and sign a new lease. As buyers, do we have any recourse against the board?
“The purchasers have no claim against the board,” said Howard Schechter, a Manhattan co-op lawyer. He explained that a prospective buyer and a co-op board have no legal relationship and the board owes no duty to the people it is considering.
“Even the seller, with whom the board does have a legal relationship, would be unlikely to be successful in pursuing a claim based on delay,” Mr. Schechter said, “especially a delay of only two months.”
He said that while such a delay may seem excessive from the buyer’s point of view, it may simply be a function of the approval process and the time of year.
“Boards typically review an application for completeness and financial acceptability before scheduling an interview,” Mr. Schechter said. “The financial review may take weeks to complete, especially if it is done by committee, and committee members are out of town.”