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Matts v Lakeview Mobile Home Park

#W94-68 | Location: Ypsilanti | Court Level: State | Settlement: $2,500

Categories: Other, Physical Disability
Tags: Driveway, Mobile Home, Reasonable Accommodation, Sidewalk, Wheelchair

Oscar Matts sued Lakeview Mobile Home Park for refusing to pay for widening the driveway of his mobile home lot. Mr. Matts, a tenant at Lakeview for close to twenty years, uses a wheelchair and needs the extra space to use the lift for his van. The Michigan Handicappers’ Civil Rights Act states that a landlord “… shall accommodate a [person with a disability] for purposes of housing unless the [landlord] demonstrates that the accommodation would impose an undue hardship.” The cost of the modification was $428.

The first trial in FHC-Washtenaw County history ended with Oscar Matts winning a jury verdict against Lakeview Mobile Home Park. Cooperating Attorneys David Nacht and David Cahill reported a $2,500 settlement in Matts’ disability discrimination claim.

Nacht estimates Lakeview spent upwards of $30,000 to defend themselves against Matts. In the end, the mobile home park agree to build a ramp to the office. Mr. Matts argued that Lakeview staff refused his request for a reasonable accommodation there by slowing down progress on a ramp from Matt’s porch to the driveway, keeping the office inaccessible and refusing to reimburse Matts $425 for widening the driveway to his mobile home lot. The case was argued in front of Washtenaw County Circuit Visiting Judge Charles Kaufman.

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