Former Paso Robles complex tenants to receive $4 million settlement

September 17, 2021

By JOSH FRIEDMAN

The former tenants of a 54-unit Paso Robles apartment complex that previously was infested with vermin and plagued with numerous numerous other hazards are set to received a $4 million settlement. [Tribune]

In May 2019, a class action lawsuit was filled on behalf of tenants of the Grand View Apartments, located on Spring Street, alleging a vermin infestation, severe mold and dangerous gas and electric lines. A few weeks later, Judge Ginger Garrett issued a temporary restraining order requiring the landlords to stop collecting rent until necessary repairs are made.

However, rather than make the repairs, estimated at $2.5 million, the landlords elected to close their business. While attorneys for the tenants argued that forcing the renters to vacate was retaliatory against them for attempting to change their living conditions, Garrett ruled on behalf of the landlords.

The Santa Barbara couple who owned the property, Ebrahim and Fahimeh Madadi, were required to provide tenants $1,000 for relocation expenses and to return security deposits within seven days after tenants moved out.

In 2020, a buyer purchased Grand View Apartments for $7.7 million. The new owner renovated the complex and renamed it Vista Robles. New tenants now occupy the apartments.

Though the previous tenants left the complex, their court case proceeded. A judge is now set to approve a $4 million settlement at a Dec. 15 hearing, according to the San Luis Obispo Legal Assistance Foundation (SLOLAF).

Upon approval of the settlement, former Grand View tenants will need to submit claims in order to received money. Settlement funds will be awarded based on ex-tenants’ length of residency from May 2015 to Feb. 2020. Additionally, tenants who suffered the most severe health issues or property loss as a result of the dilapidated conditions in their apartments can apply for more funds.

“We can’t undo the harm that the tenants of Grand View Apartments suffered, but we are very happy that they will receive some compensation for their suffering and property losses,” Stephanie Barclay, of SLOLAF said in a statement. “We hope this case sends a loud clear message to other residential property owners that they need to provide clean, safe habitable housing for their tenants.”

Lawyers will assist former tenants with filling out claims on Sept. 26 from 2 to 4 p.m. at Downtown City Park in Paso Robles.


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IDBOUND

I wonder if owners liability insurance will pay the 4 million .It appears that possibly attorneys for both sides are in cahoots with each other .Instead of the attorneys getting paid tiddly winks, they both get to milk the cash cow


pasoparent5

The hill immediately behind the Grand View was a large dumping ground with unwanted couches, appliances, piles of trash. The city let it pile up for decades until the nearby new hotel started construction.


Jon Tatro

The tenants stopped paying rent long before this place was condemned and now they get to split 4 million, what a racket.


fat chance

After the lawyers take their cut there won’t be anything left for tenants anyways…


fredpacker

So says the guy who got a tax payer funded settlement because he was too lazy to do his job and write tickets like a good meter maid. You sure do know about rackets, don’t ya?


Zoiebowie

So if I never clean my house again to the point it’s unlivable, then I can just blame someone else? Only in California.


tidepool

If you look back at the video and photos taken by the local media of some of the units, you will see filth and tenant damage. The kitchens filmed were disgustingly hygienically neglected for an obvious long period of time. Layers of grease behind the stove did not happen over night or because of Landlord neglect. The shared lobby was full of trash and had writing scrawlled on the walls. At some point tenants need to be held accountable not rewarded AND receive their security deposit back. A good reason for Landlords to do a yearly safety inspection so they can see the status of their rental properties. Also, it is my understanding that Section 8 is supposed to do yearly inspections. If that is true, they are culpable in this fiasco as well.


sloweb

And had the landlord done annual inspections, seen the tenant neglect and then evicted them – the landlord would have been endlessly vilified.

This is related to the clever ruse that the liberals pulled to get landlords (predominately conservative) to fund rents thru the CDC eviction ban. And the libs get the credit (future votes). Clever. Libs really are better politicians. <- that is not a compliment.


Last Individual

I read an exceptional definition of a politician the other day. Based upon this definition, it is no wonder libs are better at it.


“Sir Ernest John Pickstone Benn, who said, ‘Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies”


slo-to-load

LOL yeah right, it’s the “liberals” fault that this happened. Did you miss that this happened in Paso? You’ve got your demographics all wrong. If this was low-rent student housing in SLO, you might have a point, but the few liberals in Paso are living in the multi-million dollar vineyard estates and not some low income tenement housing project by the railroad tracks.