Here's a free online service to assist New York City tenants with non-payment cases. The program asks you a series of questions about your case, then prints out a chart and set of fact sheets to help you make an oral answer in court to papers you've received. Go to this page at the Law Help Interactive site.
This is not a substitute for legal advice, but is best viewed as a starting point for getting some helpful information you can use in court. In general, oral answers can be problematic because you are relying on court personnel to record your responses. A more effective strategy is to have a written answer prepared that fully and accurate reflects your position.
Of course, it's best to have a knowledgeable Tenants' lawyer prepare your papers, but if you can't afford representation, the online system may offer some useful help and information. Keep in mind though that it's not the kind of assistance you would get from an attorney.