Kushner apartment company agrees to $3.25M fine, ending litigation with Maryland AG – Baltimore Sun


An apartment management company of former President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and more than two dozen property owners agreed to pay a $3.25 million penalty and restitution to potentially thousands of renters as part of a settlement with the Maryland Attorney General’s Office.

Attorney General Brian Frosh announced the settlement Friday, saying Westminster Management and the property owners charged renters illegal fees and didn’t maintain the apartments at 17 different residential communities. Those communities comprise more than 9,000 units and are located in Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Prince George’s County.

“Tenants in Westminster properties suffered with mold, leaks, floods and infestations of rodents, roaches and bedbugs. Management hid these conditions only to reveal them to their tenants after they were locked into long-term leases,” Frosh said in a statement. “Westminster knew the condition of its properties, and it charged tenants illegal fees to live in those miserable conditions. Westminster’s conduct was unconscionable.”

According to a news release from Frosh’s office, tenants and former residents will be able to make claims through a special master. As part of the settlement, restitution payments made by Westminster will count as part of the $3.25 million civil penalty, but if the total restitution payments exceed $800,000, Westminster must pay the additional amount on top of the civil penalty.

Del. Samuel “Sandy” Rosenberg said that the money from the civil penalty will go toward the state’s Access to Counsel in Evictions Special Fund, which was created by legislation this year to help renters facing eviction pay for legal representation. Rosenberg said the legal action against Westminster prompted him to file that legislation.

An investigation by The Baltimore Sun found that in 2013, the first full year in which the Kushner Companies operated in Maryland, corporate entities affiliated with the firm’s apartment complexes had sought the civil arrest of 105 former tenants for failing to appear in court to face allegations of unpaid debt.

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Tenants later attempted to file a class action lawsuit alleging unlawful rental practices by Westminster in 2019, but a Baltimore Circuit judge ruled against it.

Later that year, Frosh, a Democrat, sued Westminster and the 25 companies that owned apartment communities that it managed, alleging they took advantage of financially vulnerable consumers in Maryland.

While Westminster alleged repeatedly that Frosh’s case was politically motivated, a judge ruled in 2021 that Westminster had violated Maryland’s consumer protection laws.

In 2019, Kushner Cos.’ CEO Laurent Morali said the firm refused a settlement offered by Frosh, framing it as an extortion. At the time, Westminster Management owned and operated 21 apartment complexes in Maryland that generated approximately $85 million in annual net operating income, according to records maintained by Freddie Mac.

In 2021, Kushner Cos. sold about half of its Baltimore-area apartment complexes, including those mentioned in Frosh’s complaint.

When The Baltimore Sun called the corporate number for Kushner Cos. to ask about the case, the person who answered said “I don’t know anything about that, sir,” and hung up the phone.

The properties covered by the settlement are:

  • Carriage Hill Apartments
  • Carroll Park Apartments
  • Charlesmont Apartment Homes
  • The Commons at White Marsh Apartments
  • Cove Village Apartments
  • Dutch Village Apartments
  • Essex Park Apartments and Townhomes
  • Fontana Village Apartments
  • Gwynn Oaks Landing Apartments
  • Hamilton Manor Apartments
  • Harbor Point Estates
  • Highland Village Townhomes
  • Morningside Park Townhomes
  • Pleasantview Apartments
  • Princeton Estates Apartment Homes
  • Riverview Townhomes
  • Whispering Woods Apartments



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