Frivolous condo litigation results in sanctions

| Apr 21, 2019 | real estate law | 0 comments

Being a part of a homeowners association in California often involves cooperation and compromise with others. Legitimate disagreements and conflicts may arise, but it is best to resolve these through means other than lawsuits whenever possible. 

A condo owner in Chicago has allegedly been making the living environment within his community unbearable by filing frivolous litigation, with no legal or factual basis, for some time against fellow residents, the condo association and legal representation for each. A judge in Chicago recently decided that the voluminous filings amount to harassment of other community members and show disregard for the legal process. Therefore, she recently sanctioned the litigant and his attorney, whom she called a “willful enabler” for his role in filing the suits, for $1 million. The money is to go to the head of the condo board, the condo association and the attorneys representing both parties to cover insurance costs and legal fees. 

The litigant and his attorney have until May 1st to pay the amount owed in the judgment against them. The attorney has expressed an intention to appeal the sanction. The pair allegedly filed excessive numbers of  claims with the Illinois Department of Human Rights, as well as state and federal courts. 

Claims reportedly related to offenses such as stalking, harassment, theft and slander. At one point, the litigant attempted to oust a fellow resident from the condo board on the grounds that she was not a unit owner, despite her producing evidence to the contrary in the form of a copy of her warranty deed.

Sometimes there is no way to deal with troublesome members of a condo association other than legal action. Those experiencing difficulty with a community resident may find it helpful to consult an attorney.