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Elderly Couple with Disabled Son Prevented from Moving into Dream Home

An elderly couple’s plans to retire and move into their dream home to care for their disabled son are thwarted by squatters who refuse to leave their $2 million New York City property.

Susanna and Joseph Landa, both 68, say they are facing a “nightmare” after buying their Queens home in October to be closer to family who lives in the same neighborhood, ABC 7 report.

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Their son Alex has Down syndrome and they thought this location would be perfect for his care.

“All I want to know is that I could die tomorrow and he will be next to my brother,” Suzana told the outlet on Wednesday.

However, a man named Brett Flores is preventing the Landa family from living in their home.

Flores, 32, claims she was employed by the former homeowner as a caretaker for $3,000 a week until the man died in January 2023.

According to court documents obtained by ABC 7, the squatters also claim they have “permission” from the deceased previous owner to continue living in the home.

“It’s become a nightmare, an absolute nightmare,” Joseph said.

“I couldn’t believe it, I couldn’t believe it,” the wife added.

New York State has its own “squatter’s rights,” which states that “it is unlawful to evict or attempt to evict a resident who has lawfully occupied a dwelling unit for more than 30 consecutive days.” It is stipulated that ”

The Landas gave Flores a 10-day notice to move out, and the former “caretaker” called police when the couple tried to enter the home with an insurance investigator.

New York City police refused to evict the squatters, even though they listed rooms on the premises for rent to others.

online list saw by new york post It shows Mr. Flores advertising the “Prince Room” for $50 a night.

“If you don’t have a lease and haven’t paid rent, what are your rights?” Joseph said.

In addition to their mortgage, the couple was left paying thousands of dollars in unused utilities.

Susana said Flores “keeps the windows open 24 hours a day,” which is reflected in her and her husband’s utility bills.

“It’s so crazy, our system is broken,” she complained. “We never think that we have no rights, no rights at all, nothing, zero.”

The Landas have taken the case to civil court for five different hearings, but Flores has put the proceedings on hold.

“He appeared in court without a lawyer on January 9, 2024 and was barred from any legal proceedings.” post report.

After recently filing for bankruptcy, Flores has been allowed to continue living in her home.

“Once a residential tenant files a bankruptcy petition, an automatic stay prevents the landlord from filing or continuing an action to obtain possession or enforcing any judgment obtained prior to the commencement of the bankruptcy action,” the city code states. are doing. state.

“I feel completely forgotten, unfair and unable to do anything in this legal system,” Joseph said.

The next court date is scheduled for April.

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