By Charisma Miller
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Renting a summer share in the Hamptons is a pastime for some New Yorkers. The practice is so common that often, the owners of the Long Island homes for rent do not have any interaction with the renters past signing the lease. A Brooklyn couple learned the complications involved with being an absentee landlord of a popular summer destination home.
Stuart and Susan Silverman are suing the tenants of their East Hampton summer home after, they claim, producers of an Internet reality show defiled it. With their primary residence in Brooklyn, the Silvermans rented out their East Hampton home for those interested in spending summer days and beach nights on the shores of Long Island.
According to a lawsuit filed in Long Island Federal Court, the Silvermans rented their home to a businessman named Joshua Blackman. Unknown to the Silvermans at the time, their home was allegedly being used as a host spot for ‘"pArty of 5," a web based reality show depicting five parties occurring simultaneously in five different cities.
The Brooklyn couple states in their complaint that the home was to be used to film a “family barbecue.” However, the complaint continues, when they went to visit the property "they found about 50 cars in the road, security guards checking IDs ... and at least 100 persons all over their yard."
Scott Korenbaum, a lawyer for the Silvermans, told the Daily News, "They feel as if the house was broken into. It certainly violated their comfort."
The pending lawsuit is likely to be a battle of lease interpretation warns Brooklyn attorney Andrew Black. “The defendant(s) will probably argue that they were allowed to have parties,” said Black, a partner at Gelb & Black, P.C. “The argument will be that the lease did not specify that tenants could not have parties.”
“A standard lease will say keep the noise level down and keep my property from being damaged,” Black explained. “And while a lease may not specify no parties, there is one thing to have a party and quite another to have a party everyday,” Black continued.
The Silvermans’ suit claims that the tenants did $20,000 worth of damage to their home, "ruined an expensive couch with sperm stains," and that they are “now viewed by the members of the community as running a house of ill repute."
Given that they filed their case in a Long Island court, it may increase the likelihood that the Silvermans will win their case Black advised. “The courts in Long Island, particularly the Hamptons, are generally more friendly to landlords than New York City courts,” he said.
It is unclear if Blackman has retained counsel for defense of the Silverman lawsuit.