Article Courtesy of The Orlando
By Ryan Gillespie
Published October 21, 2017
After nearly two years of effort, a lawsuit filed by three homeowners against
one of the state’s largest homeowners associations is finally moving forward.
Polk County Circuit Judge Larry Helms ruled two counts alleging breach of
contract can proceed to the discovery stage, though several other allegations
were dismissed from the latest version of the homeowners’ lawsuit.
In the remaining counts, homeowners Peter Jolly, Victor Destremps and Annette
Brown say Avatar, which is the developer of the Association of Poinciana
Villages neighborhood, should have turned over control of its elected board to
Attorney Jennifer Englert, who is representing Jolly, Destremps and Brown, said
they can now pursue documents they previously haven’t been able to obtain.
“Finally we can move forward,” Englert said. “The goal is to have [the
homeowners] control their community.”
The ruling is the latest development in a years-long legal battle between the
HOA, its developer and a group of homeowners advocating to take control of the
community of more than 50,000 residents straddling Osceola and Polk counties.
Earlier this year, the group, Friends of Poinciana Villages, convinced an
arbitrator with the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to toss
out a February HOA election.
This suit was first filed in December 2015 but was set back by three previous
complaints being tossed out, prior to Helms’ Oct. 9 decision to let the two
breach-of-contract claims proceed.
“This dismissal [of the other counts] marks the fifth dismissal in a series of
failed lawsuits brought by the Friends of Poinciana Villages,” the HOA said in a
The next hearing in the case is not yet scheduled, court records show.