This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 12/07/2021 at 17:44:44 (UTC).

ARNE CHEIFER VS ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATION, A CALIFORNIA NONPROFIT MUTUAL BENEFIT CORPORATION

Case Summary

On 07/02/2021 ARNE CHEIFER filed a Property - Other Real Property lawsuit against ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATION, A CALIFORNIA NONPROFIT MUTUAL BENEFIT CORPORATION. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Chatsworth Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judge overseeing this case is STEPHEN P. PFAHLER. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******0496

  • Filing Date:

    07/02/2021

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Property - Other Real Property

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

STEPHEN P. PFAHLER

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

CHEIFER ARNE

Defendant

ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATION A CALIFORNIA NONPROFIT MUTUAL BENEFIT CORPORATION

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

LUBIN MICHAEL

Defendant Attorney

MOLINARI DAVID G

 

Court Documents

Case Management Statement

11/16/2021: Case Management Statement

Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

12/1/2021: Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE)

12/1/2021: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE)

Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

10/22/2021: Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

11/12/2021: Notice of Posting of Jury Fees

Case Management Statement

11/12/2021: Case Management Statement

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION)

10/22/2021: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION)

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION) OF 10/22/2021

10/22/2021: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION) OF 10/22/2021

Reply - REPLY ISO PLAINTIFF ARNE CHEIFER'S MOTION IN SUPPORT OF ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/15/2021: Reply - REPLY ISO PLAINTIFF ARNE CHEIFER'S MOTION IN SUPPORT OF ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Objection - OBJECTION TO DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATION'S EVIDENCE ISO OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF ARNE CHEIFER'S MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/15/2021: Objection - OBJECTION TO DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATION'S EVIDENCE ISO OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF ARNE CHEIFER'S MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Declaration - DECLARATION OF ARNE CHEIFER IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFF ARNE CHEIFER'S MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION ISO OSC RE PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

9/24/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF ARNE CHEIFER IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFF ARNE CHEIFER'S MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION ISO OSC RE PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Motion for Preliminary Injunction

9/24/2021: Motion for Preliminary Injunction

Declaration - DECLARATION OF THOMAS DRAKE IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/7/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF THOMAS DRAKE IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Declaration - DECLARATION OF JOSEPH A. GONNELLA IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/7/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF JOSEPH A. GONNELLA IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Declaration - DECLARATION OF DAVID C. SWEDELSON IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/7/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF DAVID C. SWEDELSON IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Request for Judicial Notice

10/7/2021: Request for Judicial Notice

Declaration - DECLARATION OF KAREN MANAHAN IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/7/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF KAREN MANAHAN IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

Opposition - OPPOSITION DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFFS MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

10/7/2021: Opposition - OPPOSITION DEFENDANT ALIENTO MASTER ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFFS MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

22 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 12/05/2022
  • Hearing12/05/2022 at 08:30 AM in Department F49 at 9425 Penfield Ave., Chatsworth, CA 91311; Jury Trial

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  • 12/01/2022
  • Hearing12/01/2022 at 08:30 AM in Department F49 at 9425 Penfield Ave., Chatsworth, CA 91311; Final Status Conference

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  • 12/01/2021
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department F49, Stephen P. Pfahler, Presiding; Case Management Conference - Held

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  • 12/01/2021
  • DocketMinute Order ( (Case Management Conference)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 12/01/2021
  • DocketNotice of Posting of Jury Fees; Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/16/2021
  • DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 11/12/2021
  • DocketCase Management Statement; Filed by Aliento Master Association, a California Nonprofit Mutual Benefit Corporation (Defendant)

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  • 11/12/2021
  • DocketNotice of Posting of Jury Fees; Filed by Aliento Master Association, a California Nonprofit Mutual Benefit Corporation (Defendant)

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  • 11/08/2021
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department F49, Stephen P. Pfahler, Presiding; Hearing on Motion for Preliminary Injunction - Not Held - Taken Off Calendar by Party

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  • 10/22/2021
  • Docketat 08:30 AM in Department F49, Stephen P. Pfahler, Presiding; Order to Show Cause Re: (Preliminary Injunction) - Held

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21 More Docket Entries
  • 08/31/2021
  • DocketDeclaration in Support of Ex Parte Application; Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/31/2021
  • DocketEx Parte Application (Plaintiff Arne Cheifer's Ex Parte Application for a Temporary Restraining Order Against Aliento Master Association and Order to Show Cause Re: Preliminary Injunction); Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/19/2021
  • DocketNotice of Rejection Default/Clerk's Judgment; Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/19/2021
  • DocketAnswer; Filed by Aliento Master Association, a California Nonprofit Mutual Benefit Corporation (Defendant)

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  • 07/19/2021
  • DocketProof of Personal Service; Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 07/07/2021
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 07/02/2021
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case; Filed by Clerk

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  • 07/02/2021
  • DocketComplaint; Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 07/02/2021
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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  • 07/02/2021
  • DocketSummons (on Complaint); Filed by Arne Cheifer (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

b"

Case Number: 21CHCV00496 Hearing Date: October 22, 2021 Dept: F49

Dept.\r\nF-49

\r\n\r\n

Date:\r\n10-22-21

\r\n\r\n

Case\r\n# 21CHCV00496

\r\n\r\n

Trial\r\nDate: N/A

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

INJUNCTION

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

MOVING\r\nPARTY: Plaintiff, Arne Cheifer

\r\n\r\n

RESPONDING\r\nPARTY: Defendant, Aliento Master Association

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

RELIEF\r\nREQUESTED

\r\n\r\n

Motion\r\nfor Preliminary Injunction

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

SUMMARY\r\nOF ACTION

\r\n\r\n

Plaintiff\r\nArne Cheifer owns and occupies a dwelling unit governed by Defendant Aliento\r\nMaster Association. Plaintiff suffers from sciatica disease, as well as a tumor\r\nin his lumbar spine, which renders rotation of his body painful. At the time\r\nPlaintiff purchased his home in October 2019, he requested the right to park\r\nhis vehicles outside his home in order to allow the full opening of the car\r\ndoor without the need of any rotation to enter or exit the vehicle. Defendant\r\nagreed.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

In\r\nMarch 2020, Defendant began sending notice demanding Plaintiff park his vehicle\r\nin the garage. Although the garage is designed to park two vehicles, Plaintiff\r\nmaintains he cannot park in his garage with two vehicles inside the garage and\r\nfully open the door in order to exit the vehicle. Plaintiff demanded an\r\naccommodation, which was not granted.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

On\r\nJuly 2, 2021, Plaintiff filed a complaint for Disability Discrimination under\r\nthe Fair Employment and Housing Act, Failure to Comply with Civil section 5200,\r\net seq., and Declaratory Relief. On August 19, 2021, Defendant answered the\r\ncomplaint.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

On\r\nSeptember 2, 2021, the court granted Plaintiff’s ex parte application for a\r\ntemporary restraining order enjoining any rule enforcement requiring the\r\nparking spot for Plaintiff’s vehicle, and set the hearing for preliminary\r\ninjunction. Plaintiff separately filed the motion for preliminary injunction on\r\nSeptember 24, 2021.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

RULING: Granted

\r\n\r\n

Request\r\nfor Judicial Notice: Denied

\r\n\r\n

Evidentiary\r\nObjections to the Declaration of Arnie Cheifer: Overruled.

\r\n\r\n

Evidentiary\r\nObjections to the Photographic Images within the Opposition: Overruled.

\r\n\r\n

Evidentiary\r\nObjections to the Declarations of Thomas Drake, Karen Manahan, and Joseph Gonnella:\r\nOverruled.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Plaintiff\r\nArne Cheifer moves for a preliminary injunction enjoining Aliento Master\r\nAssociation (HOA) from enforcing Code, Covenant and Restrictions (CC&Rs)\r\nrequiring Plaintiff park his two vehicles in the garage on his property. Plaintiff\r\nmoves for relief on grounds that he is disabled, and therefore entitled to an\r\naccommodation.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Defendant\r\nin opposition denies the reasonableness and necessity of the requested\r\naccommodation. Defendant specifically contends that the size of the home garage\r\nin and of itself allows both the parking of two vehicles and the full opening\r\nof the doors of said vehicles. Plaintiff’s storage of boxes along the walls of\r\nthe garage prevents the full opening of the car doors.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Regardless,\r\nDefendant met with Plaintiff regarding an accommodation, which led to a request\r\nfor further information/verification of the necessity. Defendant accuses\r\nPlaintiff refusing to cooperate in the interactive process. Plaintiff initially\r\nrefused the visit on the represented basis of Covid-19 concerns, then imposed\r\nsocial distancing conditions. Plaintiff refused to open the doors to his vehicle\r\nat the time of the inspection with the vehicles in the garage.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Defendant\r\nnext relies on the September 2, 2021 regarding the court’s order to meet and\r\nconfer in good faith. This argument is based on further efforts to conduct an\r\ninspection and Plaintiff’s alleged refusal to cooperate.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Defendant\r\nfinally characterizes the injunction as mandatory, and challenges Plaintiff’s\r\nshowing of a probability of prevailing on the merits and the balance of\r\nequities. Defendant requests a continuance of the hearing with supplemental\r\nbriefing, if the court is inclined to grant the injunction.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Plaintiff\r\nin an extensive reply reiterates his disability, and extensively challenges the\r\nevidence submitted in opposition. Plaintiff also describes the circumstances\r\nregarding the examination of the requested accommodation following the issuance\r\nof the temporary restraining order. Plaintiff next reiterates the merits of the\r\naction, and characterizes the requested injunction as prohibitory, rather than\r\nmandatory. Plaintiff further challenges the findings of the HOA regarding his\r\nability to both open the car door and exit without pain from the disabling\r\nconditions. Plaintiff challenges any restriction on street parking, and\r\ncontends the balance of equities favors his parking on the street over any\r\nalleged HOA claimed hardship.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

“[T]he general\r\nrule is that an injunction is prohibitory if it requires a\r\nperson to refrain from a particular act and mandatory if it\r\ncompels performance of an affirmative act that changes the position of the parties.”\r\n(Davenport\r\nv. Blue Cross of California (1997) 52\r\nCal.App.4th 435, 446.)An injunction designed to preserve the status quo as\r\nbetween the parties and to restrain illegal conduct is prohibitory,\r\nnot mandatory, and does not require heightened appellate scrutiny.” (Oiye v. Fox (2012) 211 Cal.App.4th 1036, 1048.) “The granting of a mandatory injunction pending trial\r\nis not permitted except in extreme cases where the right thereto is clearly\r\nestablished.” (Teachers Ins. &\r\nAnnuity Assn. v. Furlotti (1999) 70 Cal.App.4th 1487, 1493.)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The\r\ncourt considers both irreparable harm and the likelihood of prevailing on the\r\nmerits. (Millennium Rock Mortg., Inc. v.\r\nT.D. Service Co. (2009) 179 Cal.App.4th 804, 812.) “An evaluation of the\r\nrelative harm to the parties upon the granting or denial of a preliminary\r\ninjunction requires consideration of: ‘(1) the inadequacy of any other remedy;\r\n(2) the degree of irreparable injury the denial of the injunction will cause;\r\n(3) the necessity to preserve the status quo; [and] (4) the degree of adverse\r\neffect on the public interest or interests of third parties the granting of the\r\ninjunction will cause.’” (Vo v. City of\r\nGarden Grove (2004) 115 Cal.App.4th 425, 435.) “‘[T]he more likely it is\r\nthat plaintiffs will ultimately prevail, the less severe must be the harm that\r\nthey allege will occur if the injunction does not issue .... [I]t is the mix of\r\nthese factors that guides the trial court in its exercise of discretion.’” (Right Site Coalition v. Los Angeles Unified\r\nSchool Dist. (2008) 160 Cal.App.4th 336, 342.) “The ultimate questions on a\r\nmotion for a preliminary injunction are (1) whether the plaintiff is 'likely to\r\nsuffer greater injury from a denial of the injunction than the defendants are\r\nlikely to suffer from its grant,’ and (2) whether there is ‘a reasonable probability that the plaintiffs\r\nwill prevail on the merits’” (Huong Que,\r\nInc. v. Luu (2007) 150 Cal.App.4th 400, 408. Procedurally, an application\r\nfor a preliminary injunction, must be based upon sufficient evidence. (CCP §527(a); Bank of America v. Williams (1948) 89 Cal.App.2d 21, 29.)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Defendant cites to CC&R sections 6.12.4 and 6.12.5\r\nregarding the use of garages for the parking of vehicles, rather than storage,\r\nwith certain exceptions for guests, caretakers and emergencies. The existence\r\nof the rule is undisputed, but whether enforcement of the rule constitutes a\r\nprohibited or lawful practice requires examination of the Fair Employment and\r\nHousing Act (FEHA).

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

“In order to\r\nestablish discrimination based on a refusal to provide reasonable\r\naccommodations, a party must establish that he or she (1) suffers from a\r\ndisability as defined in FEHA, (2) the discriminating party knew of, or should\r\nhave known of, the disability, (3) accommodation is necessary to afford an\r\nequal opportunity to use and enjoy the dwelling, and (4) the discriminating\r\nparty refused to make this accommodation.”\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

(Auburn Woods I\r\nHomeowners Assn. v. Fair Employment & Housing Com. (2004) 121\r\nCal.App.4th 1578, 1592.)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

California describes a disability, at least in part, as\r\nfollows:

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

“(m) ‘Physical\r\ndisability’ includes, but is not limited to, all of the following:

\r\n\r\n

(1) Having any\r\nphysiological disease, disorder, condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or\r\nanatomical loss that does both of the following:

\r\n\r\n

(A) Affects one or\r\nmore of the following body systems: neurological, immunological,\r\nmusculoskeletal, special sense organs, respiratory, including speech organs,\r\ncardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, genitourinary, hemic and lymphatic,\r\nskin, and endocrine.

\r\n\r\n

(B) Limits a major\r\nlife activity. For purposes of this section:

\r\n\r\n

(i) “Limits” shall\r\nbe determined without regard to mitigating measures such as medications,\r\nassistive devices, prosthetics, or reasonable accommodations, unless the\r\nmitigating measure itself limits a major life activity.

\r\n\r\n

(ii) A physiological\r\ndisease, disorder, condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss limits\r\na major life activity if it makes the achievement of the major life activity\r\ndifficult.

\r\n\r\n

(iii) “Major life\r\nactivities” shall be broadly construed and includes physical, mental, and\r\nsocial activities and working.

\r\n\r\n

(2) Any other health\r\nimpairment not described in paragraph (1) that requires special education or\r\nrelated services.

\r\n\r\n

(3) Having a record\r\nor history of a disease, disorder, condition, cosmetic disfigurement,\r\nanatomical loss, or health impairment described in paragraph (1) or (2), which\r\nis known to the employer or other entity covered by this part.

\r\n\r\n

(4) Being regarded\r\nor treated by the employer or other entity covered by this part as having, or\r\nhaving had, any physical condition that makes achievement of a major life\r\nactivity difficult.

\r\n\r\n

(5) Being regarded\r\nor treated by the employer or other entity covered by this part as having, or\r\nhaving had, a disease, disorder, condition, cosmetic disfigurement, anatomical\r\nloss, or health impairment that has no present disabling effect but may become\r\na physical disability as described in paragraph (1) or (2).

\r\n\r\n

…”

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

(Gov. Code, § 12926, subdivision (m).)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

“‘Discrimination’ …\r\nincludes provision of inferior terms, conditions, privileges, facilities, or\r\nservices in connection with those housing accommodations; includes harassment\r\nin connection with those housing accommodations; … includes the refusal to\r\npermit, at the expense of the disabled person, reasonable modifications of\r\nexisting premises occupied or to be occupied by the disabled person, if the\r\nmodifications may be necessary to afford the disabled person full enjoyment of\r\nthe premises,”\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

(Gov. Code, §\r\n12927, subdivision (c)(1).)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Plaintiff identifies himself as disabled under California\r\nlaw due to sciatica and a spinal tumor. Plaintiff’s medical condition,\r\nrepresented pain caused from egress of his vehicles without a fully opened\r\ndoor, and hindered use of his walker led to the request for a reasonable\r\naccommodation. Plaintiff contends the denial of an accommodation in the form of\r\na denied request for use of guest parking spaces constitutes arbitrary and\r\ndiscriminatory decision.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Defendant, as a homeowner association, and vested with\r\nauthority to implement an accommodation impacting the use and enjoyment of\r\nindividual homeowners property, must comply with FEHA requirements. (Auburn Woods I Homeowners Assn. v. Fair\r\nEmployment & Housing Com., supra,\r\n121 Cal.App.4th at p. 1592; see Jankowski Lee & Associates\r\nv. Cisneros (7th Cir. 1996) 91 F.3d 891, 895.)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The request for accommodation requires the governing HOA to “open\r\na dialogue” with the requesting party. (Auburn\r\nWoods I Homeowners Assn. v. Fair Employment & Housing Com., supra, 121 Cal.App.4th at p. 1598.) “If a landlord is skeptical of a tenant's\r\nalleged disability or the landlord's ability to provide an accommodation, it is\r\nincumbent upon the landlord to request documentation or open a dialogue.” (Jankowski Lee & Associates\r\nv. Cisneros , supra, 91 F.3d\r\nat p. 895.)

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Plaintiff’s medical condition remains undisputed. The court\r\ntherefore assumes that Plaintiff establishes a disability for purposes of\r\nestablishing the basis of a FEHA accommodation claim. It is also undisputed\r\nthat Plaintiff submitted a request for an accommodation, and the HOA responded\r\nwith follow-up efforts.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The “dialogue” portion of the requirement presents the\r\nsource of the dispute. Plaintiff acknowledges his concern regarding exposure to\r\nothers given his medical condition. Defendant seeks to conduct an in person\r\ninspection with Defendant’s hired expert.[1] In\r\nthe meantime, a remote observation was conducted which led to the submission of\r\ncontested declarations regarding the represented dimensions of the garage and\r\nimpacts on vehicle egress.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

Defendant admits that the accommodation request was denied\r\nbased on the assumptions of the garage dimensions, observation of storage boxes\r\nalong the sidewalls, and presumption of sufficient room to fully open the\r\nvehicle doors. [Declaration of Thomas Drake, ¶¶ 9-10.] Plaintiff on the other\r\nhand states that his particular residence is in fact 900 square feet larger\r\nthan the “average” home in the neighborhood, which required the placement of\r\nextra safety equipment (e.g. fire sprinklers) via the placement of “two boxes\r\nbuilt into the walls” which “jut into the entrance.” [Declaration of Arne\r\nCheifer, ¶ 25.] Plaintiff states that the moveable storage boxes are placed at\r\nthe front of the garage and are not adjacent to any car door. The actual walls\r\nof the garage create the door opening restriction, not the boxes. [Id. ¶¶ 24,\r\n26.]

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The declarations of Plaintiff and Drake leave an\r\ninformational gap for the court in the form of the actual garage dimensions\r\nrelative to the make and models of the vehicles. Furthermore, the court lacks\r\nany specific information regarding door functions of the vehicles, such as the\r\nlength of the doors, degree of angle for a completely opened door, the distance\r\nrequired for Plaintiff to fully open the door, and the amount of space required\r\nfor Plaintiff to utilize his walker from either car to his home. The court is\r\ntherefore left with the undisputed facts that Plaintiff suffers from a\r\ndisability and cannot exit his vehicles while parked in the garage as currently\r\nsituated.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The state of the undisputed information and lack of\r\nsufficient measurement information establishes a basis for a finding of an\r\nimproper failure to accommodate based on the undisputed disability and\r\nrepresented denial of the accommodation. The circumstances preventing the\r\nsubmission of a more accurate description of the conditions will not preclude\r\nPlaintiff from meeting the burden required for an injunction under the\r\ncircumstances. The court therefore finds that Plaintiff establishes a\r\nprobability of success on the merits for purposes of the first element of a\r\nmotion for preliminary injunction.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The second element of irreparable harm is also met given the\r\nnature of Plaintiff’s medical condition, his right to the enjoyment of his\r\nproperty, and right to reasonable accommodation.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The parties however vociferously argue over the balance of\r\nequities. Plaintiff specifically accuses Defendant’s of arbitrary handling, and\r\nDefendant suggests Plaintiff brings this case with unclean hands due to “self\r\ninflicted” problem of refusing to move the storage boxes.[2]\r\nDefendant also states that 11 homes are located on Grapefruit Lane but the\r\nstreet only contains eight guest spaces. Thus, allocating a space to Plaintiff\r\nunfairly impacts the other residents. [Drake Decl., ¶ 2.]

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

As addressed above, the court cannot definitively determine\r\nthe reasonableness of either parties conduct, including the assignment of\r\nresponsibility for the subject situation. The impact of the placement of the\r\nboxes remains disputed, and the garage and vehicle dimensions remain\r\nunmeasured. Regardless, the loss of a single use of one of eight parking spaces\r\non a single street of 11 homes however in no way demonstrates a prejudicial\r\nbalance over the public policy requirements of FEHA for persons requiring\r\nreasonable accommodation for a painful medical condition. Plaintiff therefore\r\nmeets the three elements for preliminary injunction.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The motion for preliminary\r\ninjunction is therefore granted. In ruling on this motion, the court\r\nonly determines that an insufficient accommodation exists at the time of the\r\napplication. The court is not making a factual finding of the reasonableness of\r\nany potential future accommodations the parties may craft or potential future\r\njudgment. (Auburn Woods I Homeowners\r\nAssn. v. Fair Employment & Housing Com. (2004) 121 Cal.App.4th at\r\np. 1599 [“When the reasons for a delay in offering a reasonable accommodation\r\nare subject to dispute, the matter is left for the trier of fact to resolve”].)\r\n

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The subject order only enjoins any enforcement of the\r\nCC&Rs relative to Plaintiff in regards to requiring the parking of both\r\ncars in the garage pending adjudication of the action. The\r\npreliminary injunction remains in effect pending settlement or judgment on the\r\naction. Plaintiff is therefore entitled to park one vehicle at a time in a\r\nguest space, with the other car parked in the garage. The court only makes\r\nissues the injunction for the two vehicles owned by Plaintiff, and otherwise\r\ndeclines to consider any third vehicle.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

To the extent Plaintiff establishes a failure to accommodate\r\nat the time of the subject motion only, the court also finds the requested\r\ninjunction prohibitory in nature. In other words, the court issues the\r\ninjunction in order to prohibit Defendant from enforcing a rule in potential\r\nviolation of FEHA. The court is in no way issuing a mandatory injunction\r\nrequiring the alteration of the CC&Rs or in any way addressing any other\r\npotential requests from third party homeowners as a result of this action.

\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\n

The court declines to continue the hearing for further\r\nbriefing. Defendant presents no guarantee that inspection can and will occur\r\nbefore the next hearing date, and the court declines to further extend the\r\ntemporary restraining order pending said potential dispute period. Defendant\r\nmay however proceed with discovery, which may include a request for a premises\r\ninspection, and, if necessary, a motion to compel.

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Case management conference set for\r\nDecember 1, 2021. The court will set a trial date.

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Plaintiff to provide notice.

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[1]The court\r\nacknowledges the alleged insults during the board meetings, but finds any\r\ndetermination of the veracity of said alleged statements and conduct\r\nsuperfluous for purposes of the subject motion.

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[2]Defendant also\r\nreferences a third vehicle in the introduction, but it’s not clear whether such\r\na vehicle exists and its role in the subject action given the garage is an\r\nundisputed two car garage and the parties are only addressing the exit from a\r\nvehicle when two vehicles are concurrently parked in the garage.

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