Washington: A federal court in Florida on Wednesday ordered a golf club owned by President Donald Trump to pay nearly $6 million to former members who sought reimbursement of their dues.
The group of about 65 former members of Trump National Jupiter Golf Club had said they wanted to leave the club after Trump bought it from the Ritz-Carlton in 2012.
Rules normally would allow them to keep playing until new members were found. They were paying $18,000 a year in dues.
But the new management run by Trump changed the rules, refusing to return the deposits to the departing members and barring them from the club.
US District Judge Kenneth Marra of West Palm Beach ordered Trump’s club to pay them $4.8 million plus some $925,000 in interest, for a total of $5.7 million.
“By categorically denying class members all rights to club access because they remained on the resignation waiting list as of December 31, 2012, defendant revoked or cancelled their memberships, thus recalling their memberships,” Marra wrote.
“Because Defendant did not refund class members’ deposits by January 30, 2013, it committed a material breach of the membership agreement going to the essence of the contract, causing plaintiffs and the class members damages measured by the amounts of their refundable deposits plus accruing interest.”