A New York District Court judge recently ruled that a tenant on the Upper East Side, who had complained about her neighbor’s smoking and the resultant second-hand smoke within her own apartment, could break her lease and pay reduced rent because the landlord failed to take action to alleviate the problem. The landlord, Upper East Lease Associates, had sued the tenant for roughly $12,000 in unpaid rent, and the tenant claimed that she stopped paying rent because she was fed up with the smoke, and then left her apartment with four months left on her lease. The court ruled that the landlord was at fault because the second-hand smoke intruded into the apartment, and the landlord failed to take appropriate action over several months despite the tenant’s repeated complaints. The tenant was excused from any obligation to pay rent after her “constructive eviction.”