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Kramanak v. Myers

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District

July 8, 2013

FRANK KRAMANAK Plaintiff-Appellee
v.
JOHN MYERS, ET AL. Defendants-Appellants

Civil appeal from the Canton Municipal Court, Case No. 2012-CVG-06726

For Plaintiff-Appellee ALETHA CARVER MATTHEW HUNT

For Defendants-Appellants JOHN MYERS PRO SE SANDY MYERS PRO SE.

Hon. W. Scott Gwin, P.J. Hon. William B. Hoffman, J. Hon. Patricia A. Delaney, J.

OPINION

Gwin, P.J.

{¶1} Appellants appeal the December 31, 2012 judgment entry of the Canton Municipal Court approving and confirming the magistrate's report of December 12, 2012.

Facts & Procedural History

{¶2} Pursuant to a written lease agreement, appellants entered into possession of 1119 - 37th Street N.E., Canton, Ohio, 44714, approximately nineteen (19) years ago as tenants of Joan Kramanak. Appellee Frank Kramanak is the power of attorney for Joan Kramanak. The parties renewed the original lease several times with the most recent lease renewal expiring October 1, 2009. Appellants then remained in the property as holdover tenants.

{¶3} Appellants contacted the Stark County Health Department on June 11, 2012 regarding mold and water issues in the apartment and the continued failure of appellee to remedy the mold and water issues. The inspector determined there was mold in the basement laundry room and storage room. The mold was abated on July 11, 2012, after appellee contracted with an outside company to remove the mold.

{¶4} On August 16, 2012, appellee gave appellants a thirty-day notice to vacate the property, which became effective on September 25, 2012. Appellee alleges that, after the thirty-day notice, appellants failed to pay rent for August, September, and October, and failed to leave the premises. Appellants state they paid the rent for all months except September and they vacated the premises by October 1, 2012.

{¶5} Appellee filed a forcible entry and detainer action against appellants on October 12, 2012. At the hearing on the forcible entry and detainer action on October 22, 2012, the trial court dismissed appellee's first cause of action for forcible entry and detainer and continued the second cause of action for damages because appellants had vacated the premises. On October 25, 2012, appellants filed a counterclaim for retaliation pursuant to R.C. 5321.02, alleging appellee retaliated against appellants for reporting appellee to the Stark County Health Department by bringing an action for possession of the premises.

{¶6} An evidentiary hearing on appellee's second cause of action for damages and on appellants' counterclaim for retaliation was held before a magistrate on November 28, 2012. A magistrate's report was issued on December 12, 2012. The magistrate found, from the evidence presented, the parties had a nineteen (19) year landlord/tenant relationship. The magistrate awarded judgment against appellants in the amount of $5, 011.06 plus costs and interest and dismissed appellants' counterclaim for retaliation for lack of evidence. Specifically, the magistrate awarded appellee the following: $867.00 for clean up/dumpster, $187.06 for glass door thermopane, $212.00 for front storm door, $150.00 for downstairs bedroom door, $150.00 for family room door, $120.00 for kitchen and bedroom lights, $100.00 for family room paneling, and $3, 650.00 for back rent. The magistrate deducted the $425.00 security deposit from the total damages awarded. All other alleged damages were found by the magistrate to be normal wear and tear of a nineteen year tenancy. The magistrate found no evidence to establish any retaliatory actions on the part of appellee. The trial court judge approved and confirmed the magistrate's decision on December 31, 2012. Appellants did not file objections to the magistrate's December 12, 2012 decision, but filed an appeal of the trial court's December 31, 2012 entry and assign the following errors on appeal:

{¶7} "I. THE DISTRICT COURT ERRED IN HOLDING THAT COURT FINDS NO EVIDENCE TO ESTABLISH PLAINTIFF VIOLATED SECTION 5321.03 OF OHIO'S REVISED CODE.

{¶8} "II. THE DISTRICT COURT ERRED IN JUDGMENT OF $3, 650.00 TOTAL BACK RENT AWARDED TO ...


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