N.R. from Wisconsin writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
An association water pipe burst causing flooding to my unit. The association repaired everything except the bathroom floor and carpeting. The bathroom floor was damaged and the carpeting smells musty despite having it cleaned twice at their expense. This has been going on since January 8, 2014 and they are simply not responsive and not paying it. My insurance says it is the association’s responsibility and sent them a letter to that effect but to no avail. What is my recourse? Thanks.
Mister Condo replies:
N.R., when the association and the unit owner disagree, a lawsuit or binding arbitration are often the only ways to resolve the issue. You might want to talk to your insurance company about bringing the suit or you might even end up naming your insurance company in the suit. I am not an attorney and offer no legal advice here. My recommendation to you is to speak with a locally qualified attorney about what legal remedies you have at your disposal. Of course, you’ll have to weigh the cost of the lawsuit against the cost of the repairs you are seeking. It may be less expensive to simply repair the floor and replace the carpet on your own. You may also have the ability to bring claim against the association in Small Claims Court if the dollar figures dictate a Small Claim.
The bottom line is that you are caught between the association and your own insurer with neither willing to do the right thing and make you whole from this damage. When that happens, a legal action is your only option. Good luck!