The Chicago Tribune has reported an amusing, but common, story of neighbors who use their respective property in incompatible ways that create conflict. According to a lawsuit filed, likely based on nuisance, breach of contract, and violations of the Condominium Property Act, 765 ILCS 605/1 et seq., a set of owners that had a condo in the building before the new owner ("Cat Lady"), have allergies to cats. Cat Lady has allegedly accumulated 20 cats in her single bedroom condo. The smell from the urine and feces has wafted, through shared ventilation, into the neighboring condos. The affected condo owners have sent letters notifying both the Cat Lady and the association (and its Board) of the issue. Even with notice, all parties failed to cure the issue and the offended parties sued.
The Chicago Tribune has an article about a Second District Appellate ruling, Spanish Court Two Condominium Association v. Lisa Carlson, that has remarkably altered the status quo in condominium law regarding a condo association's right, under the Forcible Entry and Detainer Act, to seize an owner's condo for failure to pay association assessments until, through rental of the property, the assessment arrears are satisfied. 2012 Ill. App. LEXIS 544, *7-8 (Ill. App. Ct. 2d Dist. 2012); 735 ILCS 5/9-111 (West 2010).
The novel issue in the case revolved around whether the owner can countersue and claim as an affirmative defense that the association's "failure to maintain the common elements of the property as required in the condominium instrument." Id. at *8.
Rishi Nair owns Nair Law LLC and practices as Of Counsel at Keener and Associates, P.C.