ST-PCV Tenants Association: Think twice before signing storage waiver

The following notice was emailed from the Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association to residents on Friday night regarding a waiver residents are being asked to sign if they want to be able to retrieve items from storage units or their bicycles from flooded Stuyvesant Town or Peter Cooper Village basements.

Tenants Association to Residents with Flooded Storage Units:  Think Twice About Signing Waiver

Recently, management advised tenants that they would provide access to basement storage areas so that residents with items in NTT storage or bicycles stored in basements in certain buildings.  Management’s notice is as follows:

Residents will have limited access to 3, 4, 5, 6 PCR; 441, 541, 601, 620 E20th St; 420, 440, 510, 530 E23rd St. Residents may retrieve personal property (NTT Storage or bikes) from these basements on weekdays from 5:30PM to 9PM and weekends from 10AM-2PM through November 30th. Any personal property not removed by November 30th will be discarded. Residents should go to the tent by PCV Playground 1 to be escorted into the basement.

What the notice did not say is that to gain access, residents would be required to execute a release.  The release is very broad and all encompassing.  It releases management, NTT and others involved in basement restoration from any claim whatsoever relating to or arising out of the tenant’s access to the Basement including, but not limited to, any actual or alleged injuries to (i) the tenant or any person(s) under the tenant’s control caused by or resulting from entering and being in the Basement; and (ii) any personal property located in the Basement.
While the Tenant’s Association cannot and is not providing residents with legal advice, we do believe that residents should think very carefully before signing this release.  The basements of many of these buildings have suffered serious damage and may well be contaminated with mold, among other possibilities. Workers in those buildings have been observed wearing protective suits and masks.  Management is asking you to sign this waiver and completely release them from any harm you may suffer without having made full disclosure to tenants of the extent of contaminants, if any, which may be in those basements.

In addition, the release waives any claim you may have for damage to property that is stored in the NTT lockers or the basements.  You should be aware that the Tenants Association has been consulting with its attorney regarding the possibility that tenants may have valid legal claims against management and NTT, as well as Quik Park, for losses incurred by tenants as a result of the flooding, notwithstanding any exculpatory language that may be contained in the storage and garage agreements.

Lastly, we are exploring with our attorney legal actions that may be taken to prevent management from requiring this release and from discarding your property on November 30 if you refuse to execute the release.

To see a copy of the storage/waiver release click here.