The plaintiffs claim this has been an ongoing issue over five years.
Carlsbad, Calif. resident and BMW enthusiast Bryan Hillman got a rude awakening earlier yesterday (May 11, 2021) when a lawyer approached his residence and served him.
According to Small Claims Court documents posted by Hillman on Twitter, two of Hillman’s neighbors sought legal council, filed all the correct paperwork, and are seeking $15,000 in reparations for “interfering with the quiet enjoyment of my (their) property.”
One neighbor is suing for $2,000 a year over five years whereas the other neighbor is asking for $1,000 a year.
Check out his tweets below,
Just in case Hillman deletes his tweets, the pertinent parts of the court documents read,
“Bryan Hillman has breached the covenant of quiet enjoyment of our home for over 5 years through his vehicles loud modified mufflers and reckless driving. He has used verbal assault and intimidation towards Susan. Debbie Hillman, owner of the house (presumably Bryan’s Mom) has maintained the situation despite many requests to abate.”
The other neighbor’s statement reads,
“Mr. Hillman’s behaviour interferes with the quiet enjoyment of my property due to his reckless use of his vehicle(s).”
Prior to being served, Hillman’s capitalized on his “beef” by manufacturing and selling decals from his merch store. If you can’t guess the blurred out bit, it rhymes with luck.
Most of Hillman’s social media posts showing him ripping donuts or breaking traction in and around his neighborhood, as of this writing, are now set to private or deleted for obvious reasons. What remains is relatively tame.
California tenants implied warranty of quiet enjoyment.
Baked into the California Civil Code is Civil Code 1927 which essentially says homeowners, lessees and tenants have the “implied warranty of quiet enjoyment.”
This implied right doesn’t mean all noise is unwarranted since living in the real world means dealing with everyday noises like yard work, people working in garages, and cheering neighbors watching sports.
Those claiming breach of this covenant must prove the nuisance caused a “substantial interference” to the enjoyment of their house.
In Hillman’s case, it’s safe to assume chats with Hillman’s Mom, calls to local police, and requests to Hillman to “turn it down a notch” weren’t enough.
If Hillman’s neighbors have a legitimate case, they’ll provide the court with files proving calls to police, sound clips or video taken over time, and statements from other neighbors to corroborate their claims. This is probably why they hired a lawyer to make sure all t’s are crossed and i’s dotted.
While Carlsbad has no specific noise ordinance targeting loud cars, San Diego County does. Sec 36.410 is a Limitation on sound levels for impulsive noises. Any loud noise sharply breaching 82 dBA counts as an impulsive noise. Loud exhaust barks and screeching tires arguably fit into that category. Proper sound measurements tied to this County ordinance breach could go in the plaintiff’s favor.
It’s one thing to enjoy some exhaust revs now and then but for your car antics to be an issue to your fellow neighbors over half a decade is another thing, entirely.
As car enthusiasts, we have a duty to enjoy our cars in a way that’s not a detriment to others, that means choosing our secret drift locations away from the public, keeping our racing on the track, and being reasonable where we live.
With a competent lawyer and “receipts” it sounds like Hillman has the cards stacked against him. It’d be in his best interest, and for the sake of his Mom’s sanity and bank account, to enter into mediation, ASAP. A genuine sorry, a basket of cookies as a contrite gesture, and not being unreasonable might work, too.
Remember kids, don’t s*** where you eat!