MANHATTAN (CN) – Hunter College brought an eviction action against a former student it says has been squatting for years in its Manhattan dormitory.
Now in her 30s, according to the complaint, Lisa Palmer moved into the Brookdale Residence Hall on East 25th Street and First Avenue in the spring 2016 semester.
Hunter College, which filed the Feb. 28 complaint with attorneys at Pryor Cashman, says Palmer violated the terms of her occupancy agreement almost immediately by failing to pay more than $1,800 in residence fees.
Though the school denied Palmer’s application for student housing in the next semester, it says she ignored the notice to vacate and dropped out of school.
“Since that time, Palmer has racked up a staggering $94,000 in unpaid residence hall charges,” the complaint states.
Hunter, which is part of the City University of New York system, says Palmer again ignored the notice it served in fall 2017 about formally terminating her month-to-month tenancy.
More egregiously, the complaint states, Palmer paid a visit to the college’s Residence Life Office on Jan. 26, 2018, to demand a 2018 resident identification card that would let her access other portions of the campus.
The school notes that this occurred “more than 18 months since she was last enrolled as a student.”
“Palmer’s longtime refusal to comply with legal notices, and hostile treatment of Hunter College administrators in furtherance of her ongoing illegal occupancy leave Hunter College with no choice but to seek the court’s assistance in regaining possession of its property currently occupied by Palmer,” the complaint states.
Hunter filed its suit in Manhattan Supreme Court. In addition to a judgment of $94,372, with interest, Hunter wants a city marshal or the county sheriff to “eject Palmer from Room E579.”
The school is represented by Pryor Cashman attorney Eric Sherman.
Reporters at the New York Post who visited Palmer at her dorm say the 100-square-foot single is a mess.
The article calls Palmer a former geography major who now works for an architecture firm and has no plans of moving out while she fights the suit.
“I felt that it was a miscommunication initially, but after I met with the dean I felt that they were starting to treat me unfairly. It was like, ‘Get out,’” she said, according to the Post.