Grove Isle developers settle lawsuit after six years
By Kluger Kaplan October 20, 2015
After six years, the developers of Grove Isle have agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by its condo owners.
By Ina Cordle
The Real Deal’s Ina Cordle recently spoke with Abbey Kaplan about his recent settlement in a case that lasted 6 years. In 2009, Coconut Grove’s Grove Isle condo association sued the development company and related entities over annual club dues, and alleged that unit owners were unfairly assessed for common area maintenance, including to maintain the bridge between the Grove Isle Hotel & Spa and residential areas, as well as security and other upkeep for facilities.
According to the developers’ attorney, Abbey Kaplan, founding member of Kluger, Kaplan, Silverman, Katzen & Levine, the facilities had knowingly been used by the public since the early 1990’s. He said that the lawsuit was an attempt by the association to modify a 30-year-old Declaration of Condominium so that the residents would be relieved from paying 100 percent of the maintenance and upkeep of the developer’s property. He told The Real Deal that the suit was seeking more than $5 million.
Kaplan argued that the owners agreed to terms of the condo declaration when they bought their units and were aware of the commitments when they moved in. The attorneys also argued the association’s allegations were “time barred” and therefore they could not change the terms years later.
“My clients were flabbergasted that they had to be stuck in this litigation for six years, at great expense to everybody,” Kaplan told TRD.
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