Unlawful detainer law is filled with pitfalls for the unwary. For example, if the landlord realizes after the unlawful detainer complaint has been filed that its three day notice is invalid, can it simply serve a new three day notice, then amend its complaint? In California, the answer is that the landlord must dismiss the […]

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Title insurers often discover defects in transactions after escrow has closed. When this occurs, they regularly request that parties to a real estate transaction execute “corrective” trust deeds or grant deeds. However, parties should consult with counsel before doing so, as the title insurer may have a bigger problem on its hands than it is causing the owner […]

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The Federal American with Disabilities Act (Title 42, sections 12101 et. seq. of the United States Code [“ADA” for short]) the California Unruh Act (Civil Code sections 51 – 53) present pitfalls for owners and tenants of commercial properties. While the Unruh Act protects against discrimination generally, with disabilities among the areas of protection, the […]

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Co-owners of real estate in California have an absolute legal right to partition the property, thereby causing the property to be sold and the proceeds distributed.

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Updated on May 15, 2017 Co-ownership of real estate in California can be expensive when one co-owner, known in the law as a co-tenant, does not cooperate in the sale of the property. This often occurs when the uncooperative co-tenant is enjoying the benefits of a property without contributing to the expenses of the property. When a partition action (lawsuit) […]

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California escrows perform an important role in modern real estate and business transactions. While escrow holders are not exempt from negligence, many escrows have made such an argument, contending that they cannot commit negligence so long as they follow the escrow instructions. One court summarily rejected the arguments of a “malfeasant escrow holder [that attempted] to […]

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Warning to the real estate industry: a widespread fraud is currently underway that could cost you and your client tens, or even hundreds, of thousands of dollars. The Scam The scam is simple: the scammer obtains access to information concerning a pending real estate transaction, using this information to impersonate a party to the transaction to […]

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The article below appeared in the California Real Property Journal, the Official Publication of the Real Property Section of the State Bar of California. A PDF of the article is available here. Volume 32, Number 2, 2014 Mortgage Shotgunning and the Priority of Trust Deeds By Scott Talkov This article reviews recent California case law concerning […]

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If you have ever purchased or sold a home, or seen a medical doctor, no doubt you were presented with a proposed written agreement, possibly on a preprinted form, that contained an arbitration provision.

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One of the simplest ways for a plaintiff involved in a commercial breach of contract claim to increase its chance at recovering damages is to apply for a writ of attachment. California Code of Civil Procedure section 483.010 provides for writs of attachment to be issued where: (1) a claim is based upon a contract; […]

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SB 1186, California’s new law targeting disability access lawsuits, provides minimal assistance to business owners.  Although hailed by its sponsors, Senators Dutton and Steinberg, as a reform for what business owners describe as Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA shakedown lawsuits, the law is far more limited than many believe.  A summary of the major provisions of the law are provided […]

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A seller’s duty to disclose construction defects likely includes the duty to disclose prior construction defect litigation under the California ruling in Calemine v. Samuelson.

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