Civil Procedure Residential Real Estate

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New Year - New Insurance Law

In an earthquake related judgment issued in late December 2016, the High Court (Court) found a mutual duty of good faith applied to parties to an insurance contract, including during the claims handling process. A breach of...more

Real Property & Title Insurance Update: Week Ending January 13, 2017

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Foreclosure: where a valid mortgage properly encumbers the subject property, an incorrect deed and a reformation of deed count are not fatal to a foreclosure action - Heartwood 2, LLC v. Dori, Case...more

Supreme Court Decides Lightfoot v. Cendant Mortgage Corporation

On January 18, 2017, the Supreme Court decided Lightfoot v. Cendant Mortgage Corporation, No. 14-1055, holding that Fannie Mae’s corporate charter, which gives Fannie Mae the power “to sue and be sued, and to complain and...more

Court Rejects PTAB Decision for Excluding Evidence of Deceased Appraiser

At the end of 2016, the Illinois appellate court reversed and remanded a PTAB decision that excluded one party’s evidence because the appraiser who authored the appraisal died prior to the hearing. The case at issue, 1411...more

Missouri Supreme Court Addresses Insurer Intervention, Garnishment Proceedings and Bad Faith Findings

Allen v. Bryers and Atain Specialty Insurance Company, — S.W.3d —, 2016 WL 7378560 (Mo. banc, December 20, 2016) In a recent opinion, the Missouri Supreme Court addressed the timing for an insurer’s intervention in a...more

FDCPA’s “Least Sophisticated Consumer” May Still Have Commonsense

Late December, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals (Fourth Circuit), in Lovegrove v. Ocwen Home Loans Srvs., upheld summary judgment in favor of a mortgage servicer against allegations under the Fair Debt Collection Practices...more

First Department Affirms Partial Dismissal of RMBS Repurchase Claims

On December 29, 2016, the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, in a 4-1 decision, affirmed a 2015 New York Supreme Court order dismissing certain claims in an RMBS action brought by Trustee U.S. Bank...more

Commercial Division Disqualifies Attorney Acting in a Dual Role Pursuant to Advocate-Witness Rule

In a recent decision, Justice Lawrence S. Knipel in the Commercial Division ordered an attorney to comply with a non-party subpoena and disqualified the same attorney from representing her client in the action pursuant to the...more

Real Property & Title Insurance Update: Week Ending January 6, 2017

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Foreclosure – Involuntary Dismissal: although lender’s witnesses failed to explain lender’s loan payment history statement, the statement reflected the principal amount due and had been admitted...more

Allegedly Time-Barred Foreclosures Do Not Form Basis for FDCPA/FCCPA Lawsuits Outside Bankruptcy Context

In an order issued yesterday, Judge Dalton of the Middle District of Florida held that in a non-bankruptcy context, allegations that collection of a mortgage debt is barred by the statute of limitations do not form a...more

Court Denies City of Chicago's Tax on Assignments of Mortgages

In October 2015, we discussed Cook County, Illinois circuit court cases City of Chicago v. KTCP and Halsted West v. City of Chicago, which held that an assignment of a mortgage is a transfer of a “beneficial interest in real...more

Essay: The Inter Vivos Branch of the Worthier Title Doctrine

Change for good reason is most appropriate. Sometimes it is superb, but change for the sake of change is usually wrong. It is regrettable and unjustifiable that an old and beneficial principle of law has been challenged as no...more

The Ninth Circuit Loosens the Cap on Landlord Damages in In re Kupfer

Any property owner which has experienced the bankruptcy of a tenant is doubtless keenly aware of the limitation on damages which the Bankruptcy Code imposes on the landlord. A new decision by the Ninth Circuit bolsters the...more

DOJ Files Consent Order Against Union Savings Bank, Guardian Savings Bank

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a consent order against Union Savings Bank and Guardian Savings Bank to resolve redlining allegations. The complaint alleges that the banks violated the Fair Housing Act (FHA)...more

Coverage to Rebuild a Foundation to Comply with Changed Building Codes Following a Fire are Subject to Code-Upgrade Endorsement’s...

Does the efficient proximate cause rule serve to afford coverage for the additional costs to rebuild the foundation of a home in compliance with changed building code requirements beyond the sublimit of liability of an...more

Quality Built Homes Revisited: The Court of Appeals Weighs In On Critical Issues

If you happen to work in local government, are a developer who has worked with a local government, or simply have an interest in the world of municipal water and sewer services, you are no doubt aware of the North Carolina...more

Indiana Tax Court Reverses Classification Of An Apartment Complex’s Common Area, Modifying Application Of The 2% V. 3% Tax Caps

The Tax Court in Hamilton Square Investment, LLC v Hamilton County Assessor (Oct. 5, 2016) explained, “Indiana’s property tax caps provide taxpayers with credits against their Indiana property tax liabilities” and the “amount...more

Insurance – Coverage – Pyrolysis as an “Occurrence”

Tidwell Enterprises, Inc., et al. v. Financial Pacific Ins. Co., Inc. - Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District (December 20, 2016) - According to Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Pyrolysis is a “chemical...more

West Coast Real Estate Update: December 2016

Unlawful Detainer Appeals Process Creates Uncertainty for Landlords - The California Court of Appeal decided the case of Beach Break Equities, LLC v. Martin Lowell on Nov. 22, 2016, and released it for publication on...more

Have You Reviewed Your Lease Maintenance Processes Lately?

You might conclude that the but-for-the-grace-of-God-that-could-be-me nightmare presented in In re: RPH Capital Partners is instructive only for lawyers. If so, you would be mistaken. The lesson: If you want to win the...more

Appraisal is an Appraisal is an Appraisal, Except in Mass.

Like Gertrude Stein’s “rose”, an appraisal is an appraisal is an appraisal except in Massachusetts. Massachusetts’ version of appraisal is a statutory process named “reference.” Although a reference proceeding is very similar...more

Court Tosses Time-Barred Rico Claims Alleging Captive Reinsurance Kickback Scheme

Plaintiffs asserted class claims for RICO violations based on allegations that Bank of America referred borrowers to private mortgage insurance providers in exchange for kickbacks, funneled through a captive reinsurance...more

Oregon High Court Clarifies How To Read the Four Corners of a Complaint

On December 8, 2016, the Oregon Supreme Court issued a decision, West Hills Development Co. v. Chartis Claims, Inc., 360 Or. 650 (2016), clarifying what allegations in a construction defect suit will implicate coverage under...more

Foreclosures – Enforcement of Judgments – Equitable Redemption

Yung-Shen Steven Lee v. Howard Rich - Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District (November 30, 2016) - In 1982, the California Legislature enacted the Enforcement of Judgments Law (“EJL”), Code of Civil Procedure...more

Law Alert: Villasenor v. Evans

Notice of Claim Statute Applies to Elected Official - In this case, the court of appeals confirmed that the notice of claim statute applies to elected officials. Villasenor was a consultant and lobbyist for a developer...more

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