HOA Manager Court Case Ruling

This case involved a dispute between the owners of a penthouse condominium unit (“Owners”) and their Association’s Board of Managers (“Board”), and the Association’s managing agent (“Manager”), who was under contract with the Association to manage the day-to-day operations of the Association and keep the common elements of the building in good repair. The dispute stemmed from ongoing claims by Owners, which arose shortly after purchasing their unit, that they were experiencing excessive and unreasonable noises, vibrations, and offensive cooking odors in their unit. Owners also complained that shortly after they moved in, they learned of water that was leaking from the roof into their unit.

Owners alleged that they made repeated requests to both the Board and Manager to get the conditions repaired, which were met with unsuccessful “half-hearted efforts”  to  correct the issues relating to the noise, vibrations and water leak, and that the Board and Manager made no efforts to address the cause of the offensive odors permeating into Owners’ unit. Accordingly, Owners filed a lawsuit against the Board, and Manager, in which Owners alleged claims for: (i) nuisance; (ii) breach of contract; (iii) breach of fiduciary duty; and (iv) negligence. In response, the defendants sought to have portions of the claims dismissed.

In their efforts to get the case dismissed, Board and Manager contended that there could be no liability for nuisance caused by offensive cooking odors or the roof leaks. The court ruled:

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