Hedge Fund Manager Sues To Save Sweetheart Rent Deal

Feb 8 2010 | 10:32pm ET

Hedge fund manager Ross Haberman doesn’t need a $380-a-month apartment. But he’s certainly going to fight for it, anyway.

The millionaire Haberman Funds founder is suing his cousins, who he says are trying to swindle him out of the sweetheart deal bequeathed him by his grandfather. When Louis Katz, who owned the tony building at 737 Park Avenue in Manhattan, died in 1965, his will stipulated that each of his six grandchildren were to get $300-a-month rent in either that building or another further down Park Avenue—for life.

But Haberman’s five cousins—two of whom sit on the board of 737 Park—are trying to increase the amount paid by family members “to a rate closer to fair market value,” Haberman alleges.

One bedroom apartments at 737 Park go for $8,000 per month or more. Haberman, who has called the building home since 1991, lives in a duplex.

“The proposed rent increase would increase the rent rate for Ross’ apartment by as much as 30 times,” he complained in the lawsuit, filed in Manhattan state court.

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