Harborview Condominium Wins Summary Judgment In Clark v. Zalco Realty, Inc.

Date: April 10, 2012

Baltimore, MD - On April 9, 2012, Judge Lawrence Fletcher-Hill released his opinion granting summary judgment to the unit owners of Harborview Condominium and Zalco Realty, Inc., the condominium's property management company.  The plaintiff had claimed $2.5 million in compensatory damages and an additional $2.5 million in punitive damages.

John Cochran, the President of the condominium, said, “Although we were confident of having the facts on our side, this lawsuit has been a distraction and unnecessary expense for the building over the past two years.  So we are very pleased that the judge has dismissed all of the plaintiffs' claims without even needing to go through a trial. The condominium board would like to give credit to Dick Magid, Bob Carney, Merrilyn Ratliff, and Anna Kelly, our lawyers from Whiteford Taylor & Preston, who saw us through the 18 month ordeal to this extremely gratifying result.”

The plaintiff made three claims, arising from his initial purchase of the unit: 

  • That there had been “intentional misrepresentation,” which relieved him of the obligation to pay his condo fees;
  • That the intentional misrepresentation also entitled him to damages; and
  • That the association had violated the Maryland Consumer Protection Act.

All three claims arose from the “Resale Certificate” that all condominiums are required by Maryland law to deliver to a potential buyer.  In accordance with that requirement, Harborview had stated that it had “no knowledge of any violation” of the health or building codes; that it had delivered to the buyer a complete “list of approved capital expenditures not reflected in the current budget”; and that there was “no violation of the bylaws” by the unit being sold.

In the attached opinion, Judge Fletcher-Hill explains why each of these claims was rejected without the need for a trial.

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