The legal standoff with the LongView management company has ended for now in March 2016. RHP Properties agreed to return improperly increased rents to the residents and set the rent amount back to the pre-increase numbers. Curiously, RHP decided to repeat the same exact illegal rent increase exercise and improperly increased the rent again, effective March 31, 2016. The residents are not pursuing legal action at this time, yet. We will evaluate this new increase and may have to file a lawsuit again.
The Executive Board secured a contract with an attorney. The attorney representing us will be different from the one we have used up until now in 2014-15. The Longview residents’ legal documents are being reviewed by the attorney at this time. We expect to hear back from the attorney by 20 August. If you have any questions please feel free to contact a member of the board.
The preparation of the court documents is about 30% done; approximately 50 people have expressed interest in being represented. Quite a few of these will be contacted soon by phone or in person and asked to provide additional paperwork. After the complaint is completed the board members will review the document for accuracy – we have over 50 people each with different dates, amounts and sometimes, conditions of the lease. It all has to be totally accurate.
The draft letter requesting conversion of the month to month leases to annual, in accordance with CO HB 05-1058 is ready; the residents who asked for a copy have been E-mailed one. If you want a copy please request one by E-mailing to [email protected].
A residents’ meeting took place on 5/30/2015 at the clubhouse. 48+ residents were present. The meeting covered the following subjects:
- Legal report: class action will not be pursued. This is due to the possibility for a significant delay in the process, and increase of the cost by the technicalities of how the “class” is defined, which has the potential to forestall any meaningful progress. The attorney has advised that class actions are typically pursued when there are many thousands potential class members and millions of dollars at stake, therefore the costs of class definition are recovered when the suit is won. Our case does not fit well with this model, therefore we will proceed with a simplified court action listing the residents who want to be represented along with their financial injury and the specific demands. To be represented in this filing the residents have to provide the executive board with copies of their lease and letter of rent increase.
- A draft letter was shared with the interested residents who are on a month to month lease and would like to change to the annual lease. This draft has been sent to the attorney and the Board will advise the residents when the attorney issues any advise on it; in the meantime the letter is available to residents to use along with the copy of the House Bill 05-1058. To request these documents please send us an E-mail asking for a copy.
- Financial report had been presented.
- Vote of residents was taken on the issue of legal representation in the simplified filing, and potential cost sharing if the attorney filing fees exceed the existing budget of the Association.
The meting was then formally adjourned, with many residents verifying their details on the list of the filing participants, and participating in general discussion.
No new meeting has been scheduled at this time.
On March 30 another meeting was held with the attorney that was designated to work with us while our primary attorney is away.
The attorney explained to me the options and process for a class action suit. It is complicated and may be prone to extra expenses. The attorney thinks it is far more straightforward to create a complaint listing the involved injured individuals. This is how we will proceed if it comes to this.
HOWEVER: there is new leadership at RHP. Mr. Randy Iaquinto is now the Regional VP in charge of our community. The community manager already communicated with him, and we will re-iterate with the letter from The attorney’s office. I am very hopeful that Mr. Iaquinto will be more responsive to us and we can still avoid litigation: it is in nobody’s interest.
If we do not get a positive response, at the May 30 meeting I will invite all interested people to provide their paperwork to me to be included as an injured party in the complaint. People that already gave me their lease and letter don’t need to give them to me again.