LOVELAND, Colo. -- It was a long, stressful fight, but Martha Hummel finally got the deed back to her house on Sundance Drive.
The 71-year-old Loveland resident took her HOA to court, after the Amended Windsong Homeowners Association evicted her, and sold her home at auction, because of a mix-up over H-O-A dues.
Hummel purchased the home when it was built in 1999.
She said she had paid off the mortgage and had no idea that there was an issue with HOA dues until she received a notice of eviction.
Hummel told Denver7 her HOA account had been set up for automatic payment, but the HOA changed management companies and Hummel never received notice.
"Since I didn't receive any U.S. mail for 8 years I didn't know that happened," she said.
Hummel said she had been homebound for 8 years, suffering from depression and a thyroid condition.
"I never dreamed in a million years that it could last that long, but it did," she said.
A company called C & C Investments, LP purchased her home at auction.
"Took the prize for about $19,000," said Troy Krenning," Martha's attorney.
"This investment company has never taken a position of doing the right thing. They have taken a position of trying to do a legal thing and that sometimes legal things and right things don't fall on the same track," he said.
The court agreed.
Judge Daniel McDonald called it an "albatross case," and ruled that Ms. Hummel's debilitating depression created circumstances of excusable neglect, and that there was justification to relieve Ms. Hummel from the operation of the default judgment.
"The court made very clear that the law in this situation isn't necessarily crystal clear, but the outcome and what the right thing to have occurred is extremely clear," Krenning said.
The Judge also denied the HOA's request for $35,000 in attorney's fees.
Krenning said it's likely that C & C Investments will appeal the court's decision.
"That doesn't give me any real peace of mind," his client said.
Hummel had to pay $19,000 to have the deed put back in her name.
She said that felt like she was paying for the house twice.
Denver7 reached out to Christophe J. Attard at C & C Investments by phone.
He said, "I'm not answering," when asked for comment.
Hummel said she's just happy to have the deed back in her name.
"I'm very grateful, very thankful I'm back in my home," she said.