An “innocent mistake” has been rectified and the lawsuit between Ocean Ridge developer Mark Saunders and the Ocean Ridge Master Association has been settled. The amicable legal agreement means that assessment payments on exempt homes were indeed an oversight. Saunders, who manages the Ocean Ridge development, was supposed to be exempt from funding obligations when association governance was turned over to elected board members. As the amicable settlement reflects, this was overlooked and assessment payments on exempt homes were mistakenly made before being discovered. Saunders, the Ocean Ridge developer, has worked in the North Carolina real estate sector for decades and is happy to have this resolved and is looking forward to working with the association in the future. For more information, please see the copy of the settlement below.
Ocean Ridge Developer and Association Reach Settlement
Mark Saunders and Association Reach Amicable Settlement
Mark Saunders, manager of the Ocean Ridge® development companies, and the Ocean Ridge Master Association, the property owners’ association for the Ocean Ridge Community, announced that they have reached an amicable settlement to resolve the litigation between them pertaining to past assessments.
The issue began in 2010, when the governance of the association was turned over to board members elected by the property owners. The community’s protective covenants called for the developer to be exempt from assessments and its funding obligations ended at the time of turnover. Unfortunately, the exemption provision was apparently overlooked, and the developer paid assessments on exempt home sites for several years until the error was discovered. “We’re confident that the payment of assessments for exempt home sites was an innocent mistake – most likely a simple carryover from prior years. We are pleased that the lawsuit is resolved and extend our gratitude to the association’s board of directors for working with us to settle the issue amicably,” said Saunders. The lawsuit was filed in Superior Court of Brunswick County, NC, last year (16 CVS 2340).
While the terms of the settlement, including the total sum paid, are confidential, the association did refund a portion of the assessments, and contributions also were received from insurance companies who were representing the parties involved. The association’s current and future budgets account for the developer’s recognized dues-exempt status.
“We have always had a cordial and productive working relationship with the association members, who are an important reason that Ocean Ridge Plantation® has thrived,” Saunders said, “and, while the lawsuit was unfortunate, it is good to get the issue resolved. We look forward to continuing to work with the association’s board of directors.”
Ocean Ridge Plantation is a residential beach and golf club community in coastal North Carolina featuring exquisitely designed homes, four championship golf courses and world-class amenities. The moderate North Carolina coastal climate and abundance of coastal activities, including an oceanfront beach club, contribute to Ocean Ridge being a perennial award-winning community. Visit www.oceanridge.com for more information.
Ocean Ridge Plantation