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Condo | HOA Lawyers

Smoking and the Unreasonable Unit Owner Attorney

A unit owner, who is also an attorney, was renting his unit to his mother and believed that the condominium association board, the association, the property manager and the association’s attorney didn’t like him because of his Russian nationality. His mother, who allegedly had asthma and could not tolerate smoking, was upset because her Armenian neighbor would smoke inside her own unit and on her limited common element patio and the smoke would seep through the mother’s open windows. The unit owner demanded that the association board prohibit smoking inside of all of the units. When the board refused, he brought a 200-paragraph lawsuit alleging seven various causes of action, including discrimination, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of various alleged laws. The association retained us, and ultimately won the case before the trial court on summary judgment and was awarded frivolous costs and fees. The attorney unit owner appealed and the appellate court affirmed the ruling of the trial court and awarded the association its attorney fees on appeal.

Lesson: Simply because you have a law degree does not mean you know condominium law or that you can be a bully.

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