Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson


Owners issued unlawful eviction and utility shut-off notices to residents

MONTESANO — Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced today that a Grays Harbor County Superior Court judge ordered the owners of an Ilwaco mobile home park to pay $926,500 in penalties for unlawfully issuing eviction and utility shut-off notices, plus the Attorney General’s Office’s costs and fees.

Ferguson filed the motion for partial summary judgment as part of his consumer protection lawsuit against Michael and Denise Werner and their companies, including Deer Point Meadows Investments. The case is filed in Pacific County Superior Court, but being heard in Grays Harbor County. The lawsuit alleges the Werners violated the Consumer Protection Act and Manufactured/Mobile Housing Landlord-Tenant Act during their purchase and operation of Beacon Charters and RV Park.

In written communication, Denise Werner described the Beacon residents as “filth.” Michael Werner stated he is not concerned about the Beacon residents’ rights and that he does not believe the law applies to him.

On Thursday, Judge Katherine Svoboda ordered the Werners and their companies to pay $381,500 in civil penalties, plus $545,000 in enhanced penalties because their unlawful notices impacted protected classes including the elderly, disabled, veterans and low-income individuals. Judge Svoboda also ordered the Werners to pay the Attorney General’s costs and fees. That amount will be determined at a later date.

This is in addition to $57,000 in administrative fines from the Attorney General’s prior enforcement for violations of Washington’s Manufactured/Mobile Housing Landlord Tenant Act, and a court order to provide $2,000 or actual relocation costs to tenants, whichever is greater. The Werners had refused to keep the park clean and safe, as required by law, allowing a rat infestation, piles of garbage, and feces-smeared bathroom facilities.

This ruling partially resolves the case. The lawsuit is ongoing regarding the Werners’ violations of the Manufactured Housing Landlord Tenant Act.

“The magnitude of this penalty reflects the Werners’ egregious abuse,” Ferguson said.

The Werners are based in Vancouver, Wash., and own and operate dozens of mobile home and RV parks across the state. More than 4,000 people live in those parks.

On April 11, 2022, the Werners purchased Beacon, intending to convert the park to short-term rentals. Prior to completing the sale, the Werners began issuing eviction notices to Beacon’s 45 long-term residents on February 25, 2022. The notices were signed by “Management.”

On April 6, 2022 – still prior to owning the park – the Werners issued a utility shut-off notice, also signed by “Management.”  The former CEO of Deer Point had testified that this was “standard practice” for the Werners.  The Werners attempted to shut-off the power but the local utility provider refused.

Judge Svoboda ruled that the notices were unfair and deceptive, in violation of the Consumer Protection Act.

When issuing the notices, and subsequent notices around the park, two of the Werners’ employees were visibly armed with firearms, at the direction of Michael Werner.

One resident said people at the park were “shocked and scared.”

An 81-year-old resident who has lived at the park for eight years said she “worried we might get kicked out onto our butts in the street. … How on Earth can [the Werners] do that legally?”

A 78-year-old resident undergoing cancer treatment said she saw “rats running all over the place. … I had to borrow money for a lot of things” in order to move.

In response to the Werner’s notices, a majority of the Beacon residents were forced to leave the property. Some Beacon residents feared for their safety, believing the Werners would kick them out on the streets or tow away their homes.

One Beacon resident feared having an eviction on her record, which could prevent her from securing low-income housing.

Another Beacon resident was prevented from seeing his young child because of the Werner’s threats of utility shut-off and safety concerns stemming from the Werner employees openly carrying firearms. Some Beacon residents experienced physical harm from the stress and physical exertion required to move their homes, requiring hospitalization and ongoing care.

Other tenants had difficulty finding parks with availability to accept their RV.

The Werners refused to comply with the law, fought administrative measures

The Attorney General’s Manufactured Housing Dispute Resolution Program received 13 complaints from 10 tenants at Beacon.

The Legislature created the program in 2007 to help enforce Washington’s Manufactured/Mobile Housing Landlord-Tenant Act (MHTLA) and help resolve disputes between landlords and manufactured home owners. The act applies to situations where the tenant owns their manufactured or mobile home, but rents the space the home sits on.

Both landlords and tenants can file complaints with the program. The program serves as a neutral party, not an advocate for either side.

The law directs the program to attempt to bring parties into compliance with the law prior to taking enforcement actions. Enforcement can include administrative measures and litigation.

After receiving complaints from tenants, the program’s assistant attorney general met with the Werners on April 13, 2022, two days after they officially owned the park. The Werners indicated they would rescind the notices and keep utilities on.

A month later, the Werners filed eviction proceedings in Pacific County Superior Court against all 14 remaining Beacon residents. Those cases are ongoing. The Werners acknowledge their February 25 notices were not legally enforceable, and did rescind the notices, but cite those notices as the justification for the court proceedings.

On July 21, 2022, the program issued an administrative Cease and Desist Order and Notice of Violation against the Werners and their company, ordering them to pay $2,000 or actual relocation costs, whichever is greater, to all tenants who left the park. The order also requires the Werners to cease all offending conduct, including current attempts to evict the remaining tenants, as well as maintain the common areas of the park as required by law.

The MHTLA requires manufactured home park owners to ensure common areas are safe and habitable. Site visits by program staff found piles of overflowing garbage, filthy showers, clogged toilets and feces covering the walls.

The Werners denied their legal obligations and fought the Attorney General’s administrative enforcement action.

Earlier this year, an Administrative Law Judge affirmed Ferguson’s administrative violations issued against Beacon RV Park brought in administrative court.  In that case, the judge affirmed 16 violations of the MHLTA after a six-day hearing. The violations included findings that the Werners acted in bad faith and retaliated against the tenants for filing complaints with the Attorney General’s Office. A Clark County Superior Court granted Ferguson’s petition to enforce the order on October 4, 2023. The administrative ruling is currently under appeal in Division II Court of Appeals.

Because violations of the MHLTA are actionable under the Consumer Protection Act, and their notices issued prior to ownership also violated the Consumer Protection Act, Ferguson filed the lawsuit in Pacific County Superior Court on August 2, 2022.

The claims related to the MHTLA are still pending with the court.

Assistant attorneys general Sebastian Miller and Shidon Aflatooni, investigator Scott Henderson, paralegal Emin Aliiasov, and legal assistant Chris Kiefer are handling the case.


Washington’s Attorney General serves the people and the state of Washington. As the state’s largest law firm, the Attorney General’s Office provides legal representation to every state agency, board, and commission in Washington. Additionally, the Office serves the people directly by enforcing consumer protection, civil rights, and environmental protection laws. The Office also prosecutes elder abuse, Medicaid fraud, and handles sexually violent predator cases in 38 of Washington’s 39 counties. Visit www.atg.wa.gov to learn more.

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Brionna Aho, Communications Director, (360) 753-2727; Brionna.aho@atg.wa.gov

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