The Constitutionality of Rent Control

Gerard Magliocca

Gerard N. Magliocca is the Samuel R. Rosen Professor at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. Professor Magliocca is the author of three books and over twenty articles on constitutional law and intellectual property. He received his undergraduate degree from Stanford, his law degree from Yale, and joined the faculty after two years as an attorney at Covington and Burling and one year as a law clerk for Judge Guido Calabresi on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Professor Magliocca has received the Best New Professor Award and the Black Cane (Most Outstanding Professor) from the student body, and in 2008 held the Fulbright-Dow Distinguished Research Chair of the Roosevelt Study Center in Middelburg, The Netherlands. He was elected to the American Law Institute (ALI) in 2013.

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3 Responses

  1. JoeJP says:

    UNITED STATES v. VALENZUELA does not find “merit” in the claim that: “The 1947 House and Rent Act as amended and extended is and always was the incubator and hatchery of swarms of bureaucrats to be quartered as storm troopers upon the people in violation of Amendment III of the United States Constitution.”

    Well, John Harlan did cite the 3A in Poe v. Ullman, involving contraceptives, so well, why not? The issue would be some sort of continuing government invasion though. Rent control is (as here) more of a Takings Clause issue. Some surveillance regime might be more apt though there the 4A pops up.

  2. SR says:

    The Supreme Court has already decided that a rent control ordinance — which was far more onerous than New York City’s — is not a permanent physical occupation that gives rise to a takings claim in Yee v. City of Escondido, 503 U.S. 519 (1992). The New York rent control case — although generating headlines — lacks legal merit. Unfortunately much of the coverage of this case is based on misconceptions of takings law as well as the rent regulation statutes at issue.

    I should also point out that under New York rent control and rent stabilization, unlike the regulatory scheme at issue in Yee, a tenant cannot designate who gets to take over the tenancy. There are provisions that allow immediate family members to succeed to a tenancy, but only after the permanent vacatur of the prime tenant and only when the family member has been living in the apartment for two years immediately prior to the tenant’s vacatur. Like most jurisdictions, tenants may sublet their apartment temporarily, but their sublessees do not have rights to a renewal lease and the prime tenant may forfeit their right to renew the lease if they do not use their apartment as their primary residence.