The Money Pit

Mildred Bennett's lost her home, but she's got a $35,000 consolation prize.

Although both Bennett and ADA should come out of the deal with something, the settlement stops short of setting any legal precedents. It leaves unanswered the question of how disabled a person must be in order to qualify for the property-tax break. Bennett's case would have been the first to raise the issue in Colorado; now the definition of "legally disabled" will have to be pondered by another judge in another case.

After being evicted from her home, Bennett was taken to Denver General Hospital for evaluation; she eventually stayed for two months. From there she was shuffled to Fort Logan, where she resided until June 1997. Since then she has been living with her son in a family friend's basement, accommodations for which she continues to pay $10 a day.

In all of this relocation, Bennett shares something in common with ADA owner Paulsen, her evictor: Both have been moving around. According to Denver city records, a little over a year ago Paulsen moved to the Cherry Creek neighborhood, where she bought a new, 6,000-square-foot home assessed at just under three-quarters of a million dollars.

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