Many homeowners are unhappy about the management of and/or by their community associations: They don’t give me financials on time. They don’t give me the documents I want. I don’t see where my dues are going. I wasn’t provided the contract with the pool guy. The landscaping looks like… bad. My association is worthless.

All these concerns are absolutely reasonable if and when they are warranted. We always think we would do a much better job, don’t we? So what do you do? Sue them?

On February 4, 2013, a trial court entered judgment against a someone who complained about many of the same things. (Brawley v. Elizabeth Townes Homeowners Association, Inc.). The Brawleys owned a townhome in the Elizabeth Townes community in Charlotte, managed by the association itself. The Brawleys’ daughter, Ms. Jordan, who had limited power of attorney to act on her parents’ behalf regarding all HOA matters, resided in the townhome.

Beginning with 2005, Ms. Jordan began complaining to the association and its board members alleging mismanagement. Ms. Jordan went on to file four different lawsuits against the association and its individual board members. She later dismissed or had the court rule against her on all four lawsuits. But Ms. Jordan did not stop there. In 2010, Ms. Jordan filed fraud claims with the North Carolina Real Estate Commission and the State Bureau of Investigations against the association. Following investigations, her claims were also dropped.

In 2011, Elizabeth Townes Association decided to put an end to it. The association sued Ms. Jordan seeking to stop the “continuous and repeated harassment.” After almost two years, on February 4, 2013, the trial court entered judgment against Ms. Jordan—compensatory and punitive damages in the amount of $34,929.59 for increased insurance premiums, increased property management fees, and direct legal costs. The court found that Ms. Jordan engaged in malicious prosecution and abuse of process and defamed the association.