This question and answer came from the forums on Habitat Magazine (http://www.habitatmag.com). The question was pertaining to a Shareholder who had taken on a roommate and wanted to know that if they left the roommate in the apartment without the Shareholder being present, can this be considered a sublet, even if the Cooperative Corporation doesn’t have a “sublet policy” in place.
My response to this was twofold. First, in New York it is permitted to have a roommate in the apartment without the permission of the landlord. Also, in Cooperative Proprietary Leases, it is possible (usually – check with your attorney) to have an immediate family member (parent, sibling, etc.) occupy the apartment, with or without the Shareholder present and it is not necessarily considered a sublet.
If the plan is to leave a non-immediate family member or roommate alone in the apartment while the Shareholder moves somewhere else, this would unequivocally be considered a sublet situation and the Board could take action against the Shareholder for the illegal sublet.