Skip to main content

Decisions and Orders Main Page

CCOC Decision Summary

#771-O, Gallagher v. Willow Cove Manor Condominium (McCabe, Kivitz, Negro).  Decision issued January 4, 2006.

The Homeowner (HO) filed a claim with her homeowner association (HOA) asking the HOA to reimburse to her the money she paid to a plumber to repair the water line to her unit.  The HOA refused and the HO appealed to the Commission.  Evidence at the hearing showed that the water line served only the HO�s unit and under the rules the HO had the duty of maintaining it.  The HO claimed that the water line was broken by the roots of a tree that was located on common property and therefore the HOA was liable for the damage its property caused her.  The hearing panel found that the evidence was not sufficiently convincing to show that the water line was broken by tree roots, as opposed to some other cause (the water pipe was made of polybutylene and the HO�s plumber testified that such pipes tended to wear out after 20 years, and the HO�s pipe was already 17 years old).  The hearing panel ruled that ordinary rules of negligence applied and that even if the HOA�s tree did damage the water pipe, the HO had to prove that the HOA knew, or should have known, that the roots were a danger to the pipe.  The hearing panel found that there was no evidence to show that the HOA could have known this, and therefore the HOA was not liable.  The hearing panel dismissed the complaint.

Go Top