Dear he should not be a landlord:
Perhaps I might provide a partial answer to your question.
You have walked a high-wire for 16 years.
A tenant without a lease in New York State, is considered a month to month tenant, and the landlord has the right to end that tenancy at any time, without need for a reason, with nothing more than a thirty day notice, (unless the tenant is protected by some manner of rent regulation.)
You have always had a legal right to repairs in your home because NY state law imposes a warranty of habitability into every lease, even if the lease is not written.
Your problem is faced by many tenants without leases. The law provides for certain rights in housing, and protects tenants in certain circumstances from retaliation by the landlord, but the tenant remains vulnerable, down the road, for the landlord can choose to end the tenancy (once outside the zone where the effort would appear to be retaliatory.)
Read more about your rights as a tenant at:
By the way, and for your information, a New York lawyer would be prohibited from keeping the rest as a fee. You may find an attorney willing to finance your lawsuit, but only if the attorney sees there is a likelihood of success. If you do find such an attorney, the attorney may enter into a contingent fee arrangement with you, but you would still net at least 2/3 of a recovery less the out of pocket expenses the attorney incurred to pursue a claim to vindicate your legal rights.
The answer provided to you is in the nature of general information. The general proposition being that you should try to avoid a bad outcome if you can.
You may be able to find an attorney--contact your county or state bar association for a referral. Landlords are obligated to fix certain things, others fall within the scope of tenants responsiblity. What the neighbors do is not LL's responsibility unless they act in a dangerous fashion. If the other tenants are creating a danger contact police.
READ THIS BEFORE CALLING OR EMAILING ME: I am licensed to practice before the state and federal courts in Virginia. We have not established an attorney-client relationship unless we have a signed representation agreement and you have paid me. I do five my 100% effort to get you on the right track with your issue. Sometimes that means legal educational information, sometimes that means counseling and non-legal guidance. You should speak with an attorney to whom you have provided all the facts, before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. I am not obligated to answer subsequent emails or phone calls unless you have hired me. I wish you the best of luck with your situation.
I doubt a lawyer would take your case on contingency.
I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 385-8015 or via email at Eric@RothsteinLawNY.com. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.