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Insurance Recovery Group News: Was it Vandalism or Was it Theft?

Was it vandalism or was it theft? According to Connecticut District Court Judge Jeffrey Meyer, that was the $2 million question in Mercedes Zee Corp., LLC v. Seneca Ins. Co., 2015 WL 9311343 (D. Conn. Dec. 22, 2015). ...more

The Double-Fraction Dilemma: Intent-Focused Inquiry Prevails

As the oil and gas industry has moved away from the legacy of the 1/8th royalty, double-fraction language has generated a multitude of disagreements as to whether a royalty interest should be construed as "fixed" or...more

REAL NEWS – WINTER EDITION 2015/16

IN THIS EDITION - Ben Barrison reports on the long awaited Supreme Court’s decision in the case of Marks & Spencer plc v BNP Paribas Securities Services Trust Company (Jersey) Limited (pg 03); We dedicate two...more

Texas Federal Court Rejects Insured’s Attempt To Destroy Diversity By Naming Adjuster As Defendant

The insured in Patel v. Acceptance Indem. Ins. Co., No. 4:15-CV-944-A, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10300 (N.D. Tex. Jan. 28, 2016), alleged that Acceptance Indemnity Insurance Company and its adjuster, Charles Payne, did not fully...more

Bankruptcy & Creditors' Rights News: Secured Lender Forced, under Bankruptcy Code Section 506(c), to Pay Trustee's Expenses of...

For secured lenders, the single most dangerous provision of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code is section 506(c). This section permits the bankruptcy court to collect from the lender’s collateral the bankruptcy estate’s necessary...more

Ohio Supreme Court: Form Oil and Gas Lease Not Void as Against Public Policy

Earlier this week, in an unsurprising but nevertheless meaningful decision, the Ohio Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the standard form oil and gas lease at issue was not “perpetual,” and thus was not void as against...more

Contractors can be Liable for Following Owners’ Directives

In Downey v. Chutehall Construction Co. (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-001-16), the Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled a contractor can be liable for violating building codes despite the fact that the party suing it directed the...more

Are You My Brokers? The Evolving Legal Status of the Real Estate Salesperson

Under the Real Estate Law that governs the regulation of brokers and salespersons by the Bureau of Real Estate, a salesperson is theoretically subject to supervision and control at all times by the broker that employs the...more

The Thin Line Between Land Litigation and Land Use Controversies

Frequently, land litigation—land boundary and ownership claims - is a controversy concerning the use of land. The recent case of Hedgepeth v. Parker’s Landing Property Owners Association, Inc. ___ N.C. App. ___ ___ S.E.2d...more

Florida District Court of Appeals Addresses Voluntary Payment By Insurer After Suit Filed

In a recent decision, another Florida District Court of Appeals weighed in on the issue of whether voluntary payment by an insurer after suit is filed is a “confession of judgment” for purposes of awarding the insureds’...more

Tips on Pursuing and Defending Complaints against Contractors

The often staggering cost of litigation has prompted an equally staggering amount of regulatory complaints against contractors in recent years. Why? Because filing a complaint against a contractor may not cost a complainant...more

A Closer Look at "Accidental Contracts"

While the intention of the parties in the deal may be straightforward, unfortunately the law is often not. Most real estate deals begin with a letter of intent (or term sheet) spelling out the principal terms of the deal....more

Third Circuit Holds That Courts – Not Arbitrators – Must Determine Whether Arbitration Clauses Permit Class Action Arbitration

The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, in a precedential opinion, recently held that courts, not arbitrators, must decide whether a class action dispute should be governed by arbitration unless the...more

North Carolina Supreme Court Rejects Claims against Lender over Failed Real Estate Development

The NC Supreme Court recently affirmed the dismissal of a multitude of lender liability claims asserted against BB&T in a quasi-class action by purchasers of undeveloped lots in Brunswick County. In Arnesen et al. v. Rivers...more

First Floods of 2016: Insurance Recovery Tips for Midwestern Businesses

The beginning of 2016 brought floods to the Midwest—and, tragically, loss of life and extensive property damage. With the floodwaters now receding and cleanup underway, affected businesses should consider obtaining insurance...more

Money, Dirt and Steel: Year End 2015 NC Real Property Litigation Update

Inverse Condemnation: Nies v. Town of Emerald Isle, COA15-169 (November 17, 2015). The Town of Emerald Isle established a beach nourishment project extending the mean high water mark seaward, and regulating vehicles...more

California Appellate Court Holds Unruh Act Does Not Apply to Legislative Action

Decision Comes in Short-Term Rental Ordinance Litigation - California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act, which prohibits a business establishment from discriminating in housing or other accommodations, does not apply to an...more

Hold who harmless? Be careful in drafting indemnity provisions

In another example that there is no “boilerplate” in commercial real estate documents, the California Court of Appeal recently held that an indemnity provision not only covered claims by third parties, but it also covered...more

Federal Appeals Court Emphasizes the Importance of Enforcing Contractual Limitations on Consequential Damages

A recent federal court of appeals decision endorses consequential damages exclusions in commercial contracts, and makes clear that such limitations are enforceable under North Carolina law. The United States Court of...more

Florida Court Holds No Duty to Defend Construction Defect Suit

In its recent decision in Core Construction Services Southeast v. Crum & Forster Specialty Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 163695 (S.D. Fla. Dec. 7, 2015), the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida...more

“Death by a Thousand Cuts” – Commercial Landlord Liable for Constructive Eviction Based on Cumulative Interference with Tenant’s...

In its recent decision, Sears, Roebuck & Co. v. 69th Street Retail Mall, L.P., 2015 WL 5778622, the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the liability of a commercial landlord on a claim of constructive eviction based on the...more

Interpreting Arbitration Agreements: Two Key Points from Recent Texas Supreme Court Decisions

The Texas Supreme Court recently added another opinion to its ever-growing body of law interpreting arbitration agreements. The opinion falls in line with prior decisions on two key issues: 1. what amounts to waiver of the...more

Depreciation of Labor Class Action - Minnesota Supreme Court Oral Argument

I’ve been following closely a series of class actions around the country alleging that, in calculating the “actual cash value” of property damage under a homeowners or commercial property insurance policy, insurance companies...more

Ohio Supreme Court Issues Second Key Decision Interpreting Dormant Mineral Act

On November 5, 2015, in Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C., et al. v. Kenneth Buell, et al., 2015-Ohio-4551, the Ohio Supreme Court issued its second decision interpreting Ohio’s Dormant Mineral Act (the “ODMA”). The ODMA is a...more

Guarantors Can Use Anti-Deficiency Statute in North Carolina

The North Carolina Supreme Court recently handed down the final word in a dispute over whether guarantors get the benefit of the state’s anti-deficiency statute after the lender bids on and buys the real property at a...more

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