Judge sets trial date in Tampa for Properties of The Villages lawsuit

A federal judge has set at trial date later this month in a case in which Properties of The Villages is suing former sales representatives who left The Villages to form their own real estate firm.

The bench trial is set to begin March 29 before Judge James Moody Jr. at the federal courthouse in Tampa.

Properties of The Villages filed a lawsuit against top producers Christopher Day and Jason Kranz who broke away in December 2019 to form NextHome KD Premier Realty. Properties of The Villages is claiming they were still bound by independent contractor agreements that included non-compete clauses.

John Lauro on Fox News

Properties of The Villages, which recently brought on board Fox News legal analyst John Lauro, appears eager to go to trial.

However, the lead counsel for Day, Kranz and fellow former Properties of The Villages agents who defected to join the upstart real estate firm has filed a motion for a continuance, citing another trial set to begin March 29 in which he is representing a different client. Christopher Prater, who is representing the breakaway real estates representatives, is hoping to hear back no later than March 10 on his request for a continuance in the Properties of The Villages case.

The lead up to the trial has supplied plenty of drama, pulling back the curtain on the iron grip Properties of The Villages has had and wants to maintain on sales in Florida’s Friendliest Hometown. Court documents and depositions have provided rare insight into the behind-the-scenes operations of the powerful sales arms of The Villages, including using The Villages Charter School as leverage over sales representatives, tightly scripted sales language, sales representatives being treated like Uber drivers and skycaps  and political pressure on sales representatives to support candidates backed by The Villages.

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