A New Jersey trial court has upheld the suspension of parking privileges against a delinquent condominium owner. In this case, the condominium association adopted a Resolution – based on authority from the governing documents – that revoked parking privileges for habitually delinquent unit owners. The unit owner involved failed to pay his common expense fees and had accrued a substantial balance. After notice and an offer of alternative dispute resolution, which was rejected by the unit owner, the Association revoked his parking privileges. The unit owner, a lawyer, sought temporary restraints and a permanent injunction to prevent the Association from revoking his parking privileges.
The unit owner claimed that the family would suffer immediate and irreparable harm if they were not allowed to park their vehicle at their home. They claimed that their grown son would not be able to commute to and from his local college, and the parent would not be able to travel to and from clients. He further claimed that they would not even be able to shop for groceries, and would essentially be stranded in their home.
Although the alleged hardship on the part of the owner would not have been sufficient to interfere with the implementation and enforcement of the Association’s Resolution, the Association demonstrated nevertheless that the unit owner would be able to park on nearby public streets, no more than 600 ft. from their home. The Association argued that the revocation of parking privileges would not create a hardship on the unit owner.
The Court upheld the Association’s Resolution and the revocation of the parking privileges. The Court did allow the unit owner a 20 minute “loading/unloading” period, but also made clear in its Order that anything in excess of the 20 minute time limit would be considered “parking” and would subject the owner’s vehicle to being towed.
Parking resolutions can help community associations with delinquent unit owners. However, they have to be prepared properly and follow the governing documents and state law. Always consult the community’s legal counsel before implementing any such program.