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Apartment residents sue over broken elevator

February 11, 2016

The owners of an apartment complex who took nearly two months to repair a broken elevator, leaving residents with disabilities essentially stranded in their apartments, have been sued over the summer 2015 incident.

Capitol Station in Indianapolis, financed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, provides housing for people ages 62 and older. The three-story building is advertised as wheelchair accessible, and many of the residents have mobility issues and are unable to take the stairs, according to the complaint filed by four residents and the Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana Inc.

The federal lawsuit alleges that Capitol Station was without a working elevator for five and half weeks in August and September 2015, resulting in harm to residents with disabilities. The FHCCI conducted an investigation after being contacted by residents.

Plaintiffs allege owners and management failed to make repairs in a timely fashion and refused to provide reasonable accommodations to residents with disabilities, causing “physical harm, humiliation and emotional stress.” They seek damages under the federal and Indiana Fair Housing Acts and an order that the defendants receive training and alter their policies and practices to provide reasonable accommodations to disabled tenants residing in their property.

United Church Residences of Indianapolis, Indiana Inc. and United Church Homes Inc. are the owners of Capitol Station.

The plaintiffs are represented by the attorneys Thomas E. Crishon and Melissa L. Keyes of Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services and Diane E. Citrino and Kathleen A. Nitschke of Giffen & Kaminski LLC in Cleveland.

The lawsuit is Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana Inc., Patricia Light, et al. v. United Church Residences of Indianapolis, Indiana Inc., United Church Homes Inc., et al., 1:16-CV-339.

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