Internet Backs Redditor Who Fought HOA for Telling Disabled Veteran to Remove Ramp

The internet is defending a Redditor who claimed they fought their neighborhood's homeowners' association (HOA) for demanding the deconstruction of a ramp for a disabled neighbor.

The Redditor shared their story on Wednesday in Reddit's "Am I The A**hole" forum under the username u/Commercial_Ad_995. Already, the post has received more than 20,000 votes.

According to the post, the Redditor is a housing contractor, so their neighbor's sister asked if they could build a ramp that her brother could use to get in and out of the house. The Redditor's neighbor is a war veteran who sustained head trauma and lost his leg while serving.

Once the Redditor received the proper building permit, they attempted to make contact with the HOA; however, the HOA didn't return their calls or emails.

After waiting three weeks for a response, the Redditor said: "F*** it I'm building the ramp, I don't give a f*** about their specifications."

"During this entire time whenever he had to enter or leave the house, 2 people would have to carry his wheelchair up or down," the Redditor explained. "Its [sic] a pain in the ass, f***ing ridiculous."

About halfway through the construction of the ramp, the HOA sent a letter claiming that the wood used to build the ramp wasn't the right color, thus not meeting the HOA's specifications. The Redditor ignored the letter and moved forward with the project.

The HOA reached out again after the construction was complete and demanded that Redditor and their neighbor deconstruct the ramp because of its "aesthetics." This sent the Redditor into a fit of rage.

While discussing the ramp at an HOA meeting, the Redditor yelled: "SHUT YOUR G** DAMNED MOUTH, THAT MAN SACRIFICED HIS LEGS OVERSEAS FOR US, YOU ALL ARE DISGUSTING PIECES OF S*** FOR MAKING HIS [LIFE] HARDER YOU SHOULD ALL BE F***ING ASHAMED OF YOURSELVES!"

Additionally, the Redditor told the HOA that it was violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and threatened to take it to court, which prompted the HOA to drop the issue.

Newsweek reached out to u/Commercial_Ad_995 for comment.

By stating that the HOA was "violating the ADA," the Redditor was likely referring to "reasonable accommodations" or "reasonable modifications," which housing providers are legally required to make under the Federal Fair Housing Act (FFHA), as well as the ADA.

"A reasonable accommodation is a change, exception, or adjustment to a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary for a person with disabilities to have an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling, including public and common use spaces ..." said the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

HUD also explained that the FFHA defines a reasonable modification as: "a structural change made to existing premises, occupied or to be occupied by a person with a disability, in order to afford such person full enjoyment of the premises."

"Examples include the installation of a ramp into a building, lowering the entry threshold of a unit, or the installation of grab bars in a bathroom," HUD continued.

(For more detailed information about reasonable accommodations and reasonable modifications, click here.)

Commenters were quick to express their support for the Redditor, who they said was right to fight the HOA about the ramp.

"Nta [not the a**hole]. In fact, I would consult an attorney about this. There are certain things that supersede an HOA's authority, even though they frequently think they are the supreme rulers," said u/badfader.

"NTA. Thank you for standing up for your neighbor. My husband is also a disabled vet who requires a ramp to enter/exit the house," commented u/Cofrij. "Fortunately our HOA had a very different response and protected us from other neighbors who complained. FIGHT THEM TO THE END!"

"OP [original poster] said exactly what needed to be said. What they were wanting is disgusting. To put 'aesthetics' over a handicapped person's needs, let alone a veteran. I hope every HOA member on that HOA board steps on multiple legos. Every day," added u/Autumn988. "NTA but you are the Hero."

wheelchair ramp
The internet is defending a Redditor who fought their neighborhood’s homeowners' association (HOA) for demanding the deconstruction of a ramp for a disabled neighbor. 24K-Production/istock