McCormick v. Moran

Plaintiff tenant entered into a written lease with the defendant landlord.  Upon the end of the lease, the plaintiff vacated the premises and sued for a refund of the security deposit.  The defendant filed a counterclaim, seeking costs in connection with extensive cleaning due to the smoke residue left by McCormick’s heavy smoking.  The Court found that “the plaintiff’s conduct of excessive smoking while in the house caused the tobacco smoke residue to collect on various surfaces of the house creating an offensive odor and a potential health risk that may arise to others who may use the premises.”  The defendant was awarded $455.64 for the cost to clean the house of tobacco smoke residue, with the plaintiff entitled to an offset for the $375 security deposit.

182 Misc. 2d 568, 699N.Y.S. 2d 273, 1999 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 505, Small Claims #5176, City Court of New York, Watertown (1999).