Mobirise
Disclaimer: youngandharos.com is classified as a non-commercial, non-profit property owner advocacy site, which is permissible via the First Amendment to the US Constitution; specifically, the freedom of speech/expression.  This site is neither owned, operated, or endorsed by the law firm of Young & Haros LLP . This website was created because Young and Haros were not bright enough to purchase the domain name youngandharos.com when they were filing a frivolous trademark complaint about the domain name stillwaterlakes.com and .net. The information herein is true and accurate to the best of the authors' knowledge, and should not be a substitute for legal advice. Information herein is the views of the authors individually and do not reflect the views of Young & Haros .

Legal Bullies

Don't let your HOA do what ours did, wasting hundreds of thousands of dollars lining the pockets of the attorneys to fight free speech instead of putting it towards the community.

About Us

Michael Glassic is the founder of Stillwater Lakes Community Activists, a growing group of property owners who reside in the planned communities known as Stillwater Lakes and Stillwater Lakes Estates whos common areas are owned and maintained by Stillwater Lakes Civic Association (SLCA).

Our goal was to create an open honest and transparent relationship with SLCA, one that follows the covenants, conditions and restrictions associated with our properties, and who conducts all meetings adhering to the following expectations:

  • Modern Rules of Order will be followed at all board meetings
  • All property owners will have an opportunity to speak and be heard.
  • The Board will schedule meetings with set agendas and will provide property owners with notice well in advance of the events.
  • The Board will be open and honest and transparent regarding all HOA activities.
  • The Board will guarantee fiscal responsibility in all HOA dealings.
  • The Association will promise to never use the judicial system as a weapon by using property owners money to harass and attack property owners they identify as 'dissidents.'
Mobirise

Stillwaterlakes.com started out as an attempt to foster communications between property owners and the Stillwater Lakes Civic Association's (SLCA) Board of Directors by creating a website and discussion forum. What it turned into was a frivolous trademark infringement lawsuit designed to harass and harm those who question or criticize the Association. What it has become is an example of why home buyers should think twice about buying into a planned development managed by a Homeowners Association (HOA).  Especially if it is one that is managed by NEPA Management Associates or represented by the law firm of Young and Haros LLP, Nicholas Haros, Gregory Malaska &/or Alan Price Young or any other companies that use the judicial system to bully people into submission or quash freedom of speech.

Dissident: A dissident, broadly defined, is a person who actively challenges an established doctrine, policy, or institution. In a religious context, the word has been used since 18th century, and in the political sense since 1940, coinciding with the rise of totalitarian systems, especially the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany and Saudi Arabia.

Totalitarian: relating to a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state.

Introduction

Property owners Michael Glassic and Noreen Gorka filed a Dragonetti action (Malicious Prosecution) against the Stillwater Lakes Civic Association and the law firm representing them, Young and Haros LLP, & their individual attorneys Nicholas Haros & Gregory Malaska, for filing a frivolous lawsuit, claiming seven (7) violations of the Lanham Act against the Plaintiffs including Trade Name Infringement, Cyber Squatting, Pennsylvania Anti-Dilution of Trade Name, Misappropriation of Corporate Name, Unfair Competition, Common Law Trade Name Infringement, and Anti-Dilution of Trade.

The lawsuit was filed without any reasonable basis, probable cause, or pre-filing investigation, but rather was commenced and/or continued against the Plaintiffs in an effort to harm and harass them for a website Glassic created that was critical of Stillwater Lakes Civic Association, and because Glassic filed complaints with the FBI and Attorney General against the Association and their management company. Gorka, having no ownership of the website, was named so that the association could attempt to take the couple's house.

The lawsuit was filed because the Association and law firm contended that Glassic's website diluted its mark and created a likelihood of confusion with the goods and services it marketed in commerce. Contrary to these allegations, the Association did not sell or advertise goods or services in commerce nor are homeowners considered consumers. The Association is a property owner's association, which administers the common areas for the Stillwater Lakes and Stillwater Lake Estates developments. As a planned community, the Association, in its administrative capacity, manages the Stillwater Lakes and Stillwater Lake Estates roads, common areas, and recreational facilities and performs other responsibilities described in its By-Laws and the Uniform Planned Community Act. Thus, its functions do not involve the sale of goods and services in commerce, and its property owners are not consumers because they are required by law to pay their proportionate share of common area expenses.

The Association and its attorneys filed the complaint with false and misleading information in order to deceive the courts into believing that Glassic’s website violated the Lanham Act when in fact it did not. The complaint was filed using screen shots and information that Glassic changed or ceased using weeks and in some instances months before the underlying action was filed in order to make their false and misleading complaint look like it has merits when in fact it did not. 

Mobirise

Underlying Complaint

Note: Keep in mind that the underlying complaint is mostly based on false or misleading information and based on screen shots of what the website looked like weeks and/or months before the complaint was filed.

Mobirise

Malicious prosecution Complaint

Note: Keep in mind that our complaint is composed of truthful information based on actual documents and emails.  

Facts & Time Line

The trademark infringement lawsuit was an organized effort by the Stillwater Lakes Civic Association and the Young and Haros, LLP law firm to harm and harass property owners who were trying to make the Association more open and transparent. They targeted Glassic because he created a website and discussion forum that was critical of Stillwater Lakes Civic Associations and because he filed complaints against the Association and their management company run by Tom Wilkins of NEPA Management, with the FBI and Attorney General. They targeted Gorka simply because they wanted to scare her into submission by threatening her with the loss of her home. The following time line depicts the factual events that led up to the current situation.

Contrary to this claim, the Articles of Incorporation show that SLCA was formed to manage and maintain the common areas of the development known as "Stillwater Lakes".  As a Geographical indicator, no one has exclusive rights to the name.  The Association's entire case is built around the false claim that Stillwater Lakes is their trade name and that they have the exclusive right to the name.  This is probably why they did not supply a copy of the  Articles of Incorporation as an exhibit to the complaint. 

Febuary 25, 1976

Paragraph 2 of the underlying action claims: 

"2. As a corporation, the Association has ownership rights to its corporate and trade name (“Stillwater Lakes” and “Stillwater Lakes Civic Association, Inc.”) pursuant to Articles of Incorporation filed with the Pennsylvania Department of State in 1976. "

Contrary to this claim, Glassic registered the domain name stillwaterlakes.net on 8/8/2006, almost two years before the Association obtained its strikingly similar domain name mystillwaterlakes.com

August 8, 2006

Paragraph 3 of the underlying action, claims:

"Defendants registered domain names strikingly similar to the Association’s"

The LAC’s members who drafted the position paper consisted of professional attorneys who practice in the area of community association law. Attorney Malaska was one of the LAC’s members who practices community association law. 

Malaska and Haros were essentially arguing two opposing positions at the same time, a conflict of interest which is a testament to the moral and ethical values of the Young & Haros law firm. 

2007 Lobbying against Home Owners

In 2007, the Pennsylvania and Delaware Chapter of the Community Associations Institutes Legislative Action Committee authored a position paper opposing House Bills 538 and 977 proposing to make the remedies contained in the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law (UTPCPL) exempt to Home Owner Associations. The Legislative Action Committee’s (LAC’s) reasoning for opposing the Bills was:

…condominium and homeowners associations do not sell or advertise what could be deemed "goods and services", nor are homeowners considered "consumers". To the contrary, associations are corporate entities charged with management of its own affairs. Its fiscal and administrative functions are carried out by a member-elected board of directors.” (Emphasis added.)

What constitutes “confusion” on the Internet?  
I'm not sure, but I do believe that telling thousands of realtors and potential home buyers that Stillwaterlakes.net is your official website and then suing the website for not making it clear to the alleged consumers that it is not the official website sounds confusing.

January 19, 2007 

The Association advertised Stillwaterlakes.net as their official website from 2007 to December 18th, 2008 through the Pocono Mountain Association of Realtors (PMAR).  The PMAR Community Profile was updated the day after the underlying complaint was filed.

After reading the meeting minutes, I added a disclaimer to my website as reflected in the November 17, 2007 meeting minutes:
“The website has a disclaimer on the site but the information is still incorrect, specifically the annual dues fee. ” … “Patty will have Attorney Ralston review the disclaimer”. 

August 4, 2007

The August 4, 2007 Association meeting minutes instructed the property manager to send a letter to Gorka requesting her to “take the website down or put a disclaimer on the site stating that it is not an official website of SLCA.”

I filed the FBI complaint because Tom Wilkins, as the property manager convinced the Board of Directors to sell the Associations First Right of Refusal to Moutain Vista Partners for $8,000. Wilkins owned Moutain Vista Partners, brokered the sale, and managed the Association. Obvious self-dealing.

August 29, 2008

An FBI agent visited the Association’s property manager because of a complaint filed by Glassic regarding the sale of the Association’s Right of First Refusal. FBI Report

August 31, 2008

The President of the Association emailed the board regarding the FBI visit and their communications with Gorka. In the email the president of the Association states:
“I found it very interesting that Noreen, you, were the one they called via phone”… “We must look close to possible legal action....[sic]”  

On September 25, 2008, the Attorney General’s office sent a letter to the Association's property manager regarding the complaint Glassic filed.

September 08, 2008

Glassic filed an online complaint with the Attorney General regarding concerns he had with the Association and their property manager. 

Upon information and belief “Mal” is referring to Malcolm Gross, partner of the law firm Gross, McGinley, LLP, the law firm that represented the Association and the management company.   When Gross McGinley refused to file a frivolous lawsuit for the Association, they began to look for a firm that would. 

September 28, 2008

The Association’s property manager ordered its legal counsel to sue Glassic, via a hand written message on the face of the Attorney General letter that resulted from Glassic’s complaint:
Mal - This is the husband of the Board member I would like to name in a suit.”  (AG Threat

The Law Firm of Young & Haros is Hired to Institute Frivolous Lawsuits

Upon information and belief, in September of 2008, the law firm of Young and Haros was hired to institute meritless lawsuits against Gorka and Glassic for having an open discussion forum, for filing complaints with the FBI and Attorney General, and to stop 'dissidents' from recording board meetings. During the interviewing process, Gorka witnessed firsthand Young and Haros advising the Association that if dissidents don’t fall in line 'you first call the police and if that doesn’t work you take them to court.' 

October 4, 2008 Meeting Minutes  During a meeting on September 3rd, 2008 in which the board interviewed the Young & Haros law firm, in response to a question on how they would handle dissidents they responded 'first you call the police, and if that doesn't work you take them to court.'

Meet The New Lawyers Meeting
October 4, 2008

At Young & Haros's very first board meeting, Glassic and another property owner set up to video record the meeting, as they and several other property owners had done in the past.   As promised, they called the police.

Two weeks after the October 4th meeting to introduce the new law firm, Young and Haros were given authorization to file lawsuits on behalf of the Association.

' If that [calling the police] doesn't work you take them to court.'

October 18, 2008 Board Meeting

At the very next meeting, the board passed a resolution authorizing the law firm of  Young & Haros to:
take any and all steps, including but not limited to filing lawsuits necessary to protect the Association’s corporate name and prevent any unauthorized misappropriation of said corporate name.” 

Even though I immediately changed the website banner  and stopped using the Association's trade name, they filed the Trademark Infrigment Complaint using a screen shot of what the website looked like on October 13, 2008, a screen shot that was taken 10 days  before the Cease & Desist (C&D) letter and 2 months and 5 days (71 days) before the complaint was filed.  10/13/08 Screen Shot 

October 19, 2008

The day after the meeting authorizing Young & Haros to file lawsuits TO PROTECT THE CORPORATE NAME I changed the website banner to read “Stillwater Lakes Community Activists" ending any prominent use of the Association's trade name.

Gorka says "This AG letter was sent as another threat to scare and intimidate me.  It was said several times by the president of the Association that if you are sued by them all legal costs would be charged to the homeowner and they could take your home."

October 20, 2008

Two days after the Association's attorneys were authorized to file lawsuits, the president of the Association forwarded the hand-written threat on the Attorney General Letter to all board members including Gorka.

"This is the husband of the Board member I would like to name in a suit." 

The C&D letter was an attempt at reverse domain name hijacking (RDNH) Glassic's domain names.  RDNH occurs where a person or corporation uses the legal system as a way of strong arming innocent domain name registrants into giving up domain names that they are not entitled to.   

October 23, 2008

Attorney Malaska mailed a Cease and Desist letter (C&D)  to Glassic and Gorka requesting four actions, three of which I complied with before receiving it.  The only exception was item number one, that I transfer my domain names to the Association.  

Four days before the C&D deadline, I am showing a good faith effort to make every change I can to avoid litigation, I updated the domain registration, the website is clearly not the Association's and is obviously an advocate site for property owners.  I am receiving no communication from the Association or Young & Haros, and the Association is still advertising Stillwaterlakes.net as their official website.  Screen Shot

October 27, 2008

I also made additional changes and updated the domain registration information to reflect Stillwater Lakes Community Activists as the owner with Glassic’s personal contact information.

Letter

November 08, 2008

Gorka reiterated the promise she made to the Association in June 2008 to cease any involvement with Glassic’s website in a letter stating:
“I though I made it clear to everyone, including Allen and Nick, at the board meeting in September, that I agreed to not be part of the website once I got on the board, and that I have kept my word. ” 
(Exhibit A p:___) 

The Association presidents response to director Bunji's email was:
“Reference is made to Mr. Glassic, My opinion is outstanding fine, no go! Court action against him as administrator of unauthorized web, filing Attorney General, not all information was furnished. I read the file.” [sic]   (12/13/08 Email

November 13, 2008

Among a flurry of emails discussing legal threats to sue Gorka and Glassic, was an email from director Bunji acknowledging that Glassic satisfied the requests made in the Cease and Desist letter:

“dated Oct. 23, 2008 from the Young & Haros law firm the number # 2,3,4 stipulations which needed to be met, were adhered to and no injunction should have been filed.”   

The Law Firm of Young & Haros File their Frivolous Lawsuits

Despite the fact that I ceased using the Associations trade name, added language distancing my website from the Association, and updated the domain name registration's contact information, the HOA's attorneys, Young and Haros, filed the frivolous lawsuit anyway, claiming seven (7) violations of the Lanham Act.  Young & Haros knew that I made the above changes, but also knew that the complaint, if filed with accurate and truthful information, would have been reduced to a seven (7) count Lanham Act complaint about my misuse of the acronym SLCA.

Contrary to and in complete contrast to the LAC’s position paper, the Association and their attorneys filed the underlying complaint claiming the Association provided goods and services to consumers in commerce while they and the HOA property manager were telling lawmakers in Harrisburg the complete opposite. (Ott Exhibit)

December 18, 2008

Even though I complied with the Cease and Desist letter, the Association's attorneys filed a lawsuit against my wife and I claiming seven (7) violations of the Lanham Act including Trade Name Infringement, Cyber Squatting, Pennsylvania Anti-Dilution of Trade Name, Misappropriation of Corporate Name, Unfair Competition, Common Law Trade Name Infringement, and Anti-Dilution of Trade.

The Cease and Desist letter made no mention of my misuse of the SLCA acronym

On or about December 31, 2009

After I received the complaint, I became aware of their issue with my misuse of the acronym SLCA, and corrected it. (01/17/09 SS)

What my website looked like on and before January 20, 2009.  (01/17/09 SS)

January 20, 2009

My attorney filed a motion to dismiss, and the Association objected to the motion relying on what my website looked like on October 13, 2008 ignoring the numerous changes I made to comply with their cease and desist request.  MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN SUPPORT OF MOTION TO DISMISS

Despite the position paper Attorney Malaska helped draft concluding that HOA's don't have consumers, they opposed our motion and insisted the key issue is "consumer confusion" and that they presented “enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of’ consumer confusion. As such, the court should DENY our motion.

February 17, 2009

Despite the numerous changes I made to the website to avoid confusing the customers, the Association did not have, the attorneys filed a motion that relied on statements of what the website looked like weeks and months before the lawsuit was filed,  asking the court to deny our request.   OPPOSITION TO OUR MOTION

After years of residents wanting to get rid of Tom Wilkins and NEPA Management due to their bad management and lack of transparency the board voted to get rid of them at an open meeting that day. Residents stayed after the meeting to celebrate, and as a result was identified as dissidents.

February 26, 2009

The Associations President emailed the board regarding a gathering at the Community Club House in which my wife and I were present, stating:

“I was informed the names of the member’s in the club house. Action to be taken is up to the Board. Of course we all know them by name. I think we should make note of this group, and wait for Apple to take over. I think many of our concerns will be corrected with legal action. Fines, cost's court hearings. I recommend to take the wait and see for now. I have been there, before, when they are hit in the pocket, it will stop.” [sic].  Feb 16, 2009 Email

At this point, the only argument that Young and Haros could have had was my misuse of the acronym SLCA, which I corrected days after being served and if Young and Haros, Allan Young, Nick Haros and Greg Malaska were honest, would not support a seven (7) count Lanham Act complaint so to bolster their complaint they choose to reiterate what my website looked like on October 13, 2008.  

April 02, 2009

Relying on Young & Haros' misrepresentation of my website, and because Judge Blewitt must accept all allegations as true, Blewitt recommended the court deny my motion to dismiss.

My wife and I backed out of the agreement because within hours of agreeing to a settlement the Association's president emailed the board members the following: 

"I thought I would forward a little more investigation on possible lawsuits." "10/09/09 Email"

We knew there would be no end to the legal harassment no matter what we did.

October 8, 2009

During court-ordered mediation, my wife and I decided to end the litigation by agreeing to take down the website and give up the domain name. The mediator asked everyone to sit quietly for several days until the agreement could be written up. The Association could not even wait several hours before emailing another threat to sue us.

At this point it's clear that I did not sell one banner ad throught my website and as a result I did not confuse any consumers.  We were clearly not competitors because the Association's website did not even offer banner ads for sale.  Despite these facts, the attorneys, Nick Haros and Greg Malaska, continued the litigation for another 9 months before filing a motion to dismiss the case.  One reason given was that the Association ran out of money to fund the bullying attorneys.  (MOTION TO DISMISS  WITH PREJUDICE)

August 26, 2010

Attorney Haros deposes Panther Waste and discovers that the owner may have provided a $75 setup fee for a banner, and that the owner worked in the area for over 40 years and did not know the distinction between Stillwater Lakes Civic Association and the 'other Stillwater,' contradicting their claim that Stillwater Lakes is famous.

Some of the remarks include: 

“Victor, did you ever go on the web and open a site that you thought was Stillwater Lakes Civic Association and found it not to be ours..?”

“Question, have you or Donald every gone on web site and found that you were looking at a site you thought was ours, and it wasn’t ..Stillwater Lakes Civic Association Appreciate Yes or NO….Thanks Ron”.

“Brian, have you, or your wife, ever went on web site, thinking it was Stillwater Lakes Civic Association and found it not ours.”

October 19-22, 2010

After discovery, when Young & Haros realized that no cunsumer confusion existed, it is believed they asked the president of the association to find people who were confused.  Between October 19th and the 22nd, 2010, almost two years after this lawsuit was commenced, President Ron Kluge sent a series of emails to several associates and past board members in an apparent attempt to solicit evidence to show confusion.  (OctEmails.pdf)

This brings us to where we are today, in a Malicious Prosecution Action (Dragonetti Action). Because the Association and the Young & Haros law firm was responsible for bringing and continuing a frivolous legal action in a grossly negligent way, pursuing the case without probable cause and primarily for a purpose other than the stated basis of the lawsuit. The President of the Association stated it best "Court action against him as administrator of unauthorized web, filing Attorney General",  "I have been there, before, when they are hit in the pocket, it will stop”,

May 9, 2011

Almost 2 and a half years after opposing our motion to dismiss the lawsuit, the attorneys file their own Motion to Dismiss relying on changes I made weeks and months before the lawsuit was even filed, and for acronym changes I made days after being served with the complaint.  (MOTION TO DISMISS WITH PREJUDICE)

Facts and Time Line is a work in progress - come regularly for updates

Young & Haros Gripe Site

ABOUT US

We are not lawyers & this website is not offering legal advice. We are just victims of the Young and Haros law firm.

Other than being victims of the Young and Haros law firm this site is not affiliated with Young and Haros nor do we believe that they support our site. 

SUBSCRIBE

Subscribe to get regular updates

CONNECT WITH US