5 Useful Tips if you get a NYC DOT Sidewalk Violation

Updated: December 2020
Many property owners don’t realize that they’re responsible for the sidewalk on their property until they’re hit with a sidewalk violation from the DOT. (Department of Transportation)
Once the violation is issued, owners typically try to make sense of it by calling the DOT, 311 or going on the web to find more info.

DOT Sidewalk Violation

In this article, we’ll help you better understand what a violation means and how to go about getting the sidewalk violation dismissed.

Generally a property owner receives a violation when the DOT visits a property and finds the sidewalk is defective & unsafe. It’s a warning that encourages property/home owners to fix their sidewalk.
If you decide to not do anything, the DOT may perform the work themselves or hire a contractor to make the necessary repairs. This route is the most expensive as they will charge you a higher rate to perform these repairs. If you can’t pay the full amount, they will charge you interest and put a lien on your property. “The property owner has 90 days to pay the bill before interest is added. After 90 days, interest will accrue and a monetary lien will be placed against the property.” – NYC DOT

It’s always cheaper and faster to hire a contractor on your own to make the repairs.


5 Useful Tips if you received a NYC DOT Sidewalk Violation:

  1. If you just received a violation notice, you can take a moment to breathe as you have 45 days from that day to make the necessary repairs.
  2. Review the notice and see what exactly needs to be repaired. Sometimes it’s an easy and fast fix as the DOT may only find a small section of your sidewalk defective. There will be a diagram that shows the sidewalk and which flags(boxes) will need to be repaired.
  3. At the top of the diagram page, there will be an approximate square footage of repair work that needs to be done. Use this # and the linear feet of curb if needed to be repaired as well.
  4. If you want to know if you’re getting a good price, the notice will include approximately how much DOT will charge per square foot if you do not hire a contractor. (this is usually found on the page after the diagram)
    • EX: If you have 300 square feet that needs to be repaired and the violation notice says it will cost approx $20/per sq ft for them to repair, the total would be $6,000.00. Compare this number with what a concrete contractor in NYC would charge you.
    • If a sidewalk repair contractor is charging less than that, then you know it is reasonable. If a contractor wants to charge more, you should probably call another company or 2 to compare pricing.(in regards to reputable and quality concrete contractors)
  5. Generally, it’s much easier for NYC Sidewalk Repair to give one of our customers an estimate to repair a sidewalk if a copy of the violation is sent for our review. We’ll take a look at the violation and give you a quick estimate within hours. Unless it’s a large job, we don’t need to physically come out as this will make for a faster process.
  • BONUS TIP: ALWAYS consider doing more than what the NYC DOT sidewalk violation shows needs to be repaired.

We’ve had several property owners only do the necessary work as per the violation which can be a costly mistake. Several of our customers find themselves calling us a year or 2 later with ANOTHER violation on the areas they did not repair! Remember, at the time the DOT inspector goes out to the property, they are only looking at which flags are an immediate hazard to public safety. If there are additional flags that look O.K, they will not include it in the violation. The flags that are not a part of the violation may be old and on their way to being unsafe to the public soon so it may be wise to fix it all at once. This will not only reduce the chances of receiving another violation down the road but also makes your sidewalk look better.

If you receive a violation to only repair part of your sidewalk, it’s always smart to ask the contractor you are working with for a 2nd estimate to do the entire sidewalk. Typically, pricing gets cheaper by square foot if the total square footage increases.

NYC Sidewalk Repair most times will send 2 estimates to all of our customers so that they can make the best decision. We’ll work with you throughout the entire process and also ensure we have the DOT dismiss the sidewalk violation after the job is complete and our customer is happy.

Give us a call today 718-301-8242 or complete our quick and easy form to get a FREE Sidewalk Repair Estimate now.

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