After a default was entered against the defendant because he failed to respond to legal notices regarding the suit, MW’s case was heard before the Court of Common Pleas. During an April 15th hearing, the Court listened to testimony from the plaintiff MW, one of MW’s neighbors and a law student who volunteers at the Law Center and who has conducted extensive research in this case.
The Law Center argued that the defendant was unjustly enriched by his receipt of the title to the house as it was sold to him well below fair market value – the notarized indenture for transfer of the home shows a $1 sale cost. After hearing testimony and reviewing records regarding the sale, the Judge proposed an order in favor of the plaintiff that awarded damages in the amount of $70,000 to be paid by the defendant. These damages reflect the fair market value of the house as set by the court, an increase over the $54,000 estimated market value at the time of the sale in 2010. The Law Center will now work to ensure the defendant complies with the order.