Homeowners guilty of negligence

An Orange County jury found a homeowners association guilty of negligence for not resolving an issue between neighbors at a Trabuco Canyon condominium over a smoke dispute.

The family had to move out of the condo and rent a unit elsewhere because of secondhand smoke since it was affecting their young son’s asthma condition.

The jurors awarded a family $15,500 split two ways, $6,000 for economic damages and $9,500 for emotional distress. The condo association and management failed to ensure the non-smoking family’s right to the enjoyment of their own unit.

The verdict was part of a growing trend of non-smokers in California complaining to homeowners associations, filing lawsuits and trying to stop smoke from entering their apartments and condominiums by appealing to city councils.

California Assemblyman Marc Levine, a San Rafael Democrat, filed a bill that would eliminate smoking in condominiums, apartments and duplexes. It will be aimed at secondhand smoke but would not

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