May 21, 2018
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Camden couple suing neighbor over blocked sunlight

By Stephen Betts, BDN Staff

CAMDEN, Maine — A Camden couple has filed a lawsuit claiming that the construction of a neighbor’s deck has blocked the sun from shining on their deck and in the window of their residence.

Richard Rifkind and Mary Ann Rifkind also claim in the lawsuit filed on Nov. 21 in Knox County Superior that the contractor trespassed on their deck and damaged it to support the upper-floor deck.

The lawsuit was filed by Rifkinds against Peter R. Freeman and Carolyn Sue Gill who own the condo above the Rifkinds. Also named as a defendant is Ryan Lawrence, doing business as Lawrence Construction.

The lawsuit states that the Rifkinds had voiced concern to the contractor before and during the August construction of the deck attached to the condo that is directly above their unit. The Rifkinds warned that the other deck would block the sunlight to their deck as well as shade the windows of their unit.

The Rifkinds also argue in the lawsuit that they directed Lawrence to stay off their deck and to not use it for support for his own deck, but he trespassed on it, and damaged it by cutting holes in it and running timbers through their deck to support the other one. The Rifkinds also claim that the work has interfered with the integrity of their deck and tore siding off their unit.

The Rifkinds have asked the court to order the removal of their neighbor’s deck and for the payment of legal and court costs. The couple claim that the other deck diminishes the value of their property.

The condos are located on High Street in Camden.

The Rifkinds are represented by attorney Dana Strout of Rockport.

There is no reply to the lawsuit yet filed with the court.

Lawrence said Wednesday that he did not want to comment at this time. Freeman and Gill could not be reached for comment.

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