Court Orders Owner to Remove all Unapproved Alterations
and Awards $70,500.00 for Civil Penalties
Result: Permanent injunction granted in favor of homeowners association ordering owner to remove more than fifteen alterations placed on the lot and home without prior approval of the architectural control committee. Additionally, the court awarded the association $70,800.00 in civil penalties against the defendant, as well as all its attorney’s fees and costs. The association settled the case with the defendant upon payment of $50,000.00 in fines and removal of all unapproved alterations. The association’s litigation expenses and attorney’s fees were less than $15,000.00.
Nature of case: Without first obtaining written approval from the association’s architectural control committee, an owner made numerous modifications and alterations to his home and lot. The alterations were so bizarre as to compel a real estate broker to conclude she could not sell an adjacent home due to its unattractiveness. The association filed suit seeking a court order which instructed the owner to remove the unapproved alterations from the home and lot and restore the property to a condition substantially similar to that which existed prior to making the unapproved alterations. The association also asserted a claim for $200.00 per day in civil penalties for the owner’s violation of the deed restrictions.
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