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North Carolina Supreme Court Gives Easement Holders 20 Years to Challenge Encroachments

On August 19, 2016, the North Carolina Supreme Court issued a decision that will benefit all companies that own easements. Patrolling easements and clearing them of vegetation and structures can be very costly, but the...more

Ambiguity And Ensuing Loss: The Second Circuit Affirms The Southern District Of New York’s Holdings In a $675 Million Superstorm...

In National Railroad Passenger Corp. v. Aspen Specialty Ins. Co., 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 16074 (2d. Cir. Aug. 31, 2016), Amtrak sought the entire $675 million of available coverage from a number of its insurers for damages...more

“Context Matters” – Tenth Circuit Holds Mudslide Not an Explosion Under Property Policy

On August 29, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit affirmed a Colorado district court ruling that the sudden obliteration of a building in a 2013 mudslide did not constitute an “explosion” under a commercial...more

Defence & Indemnity - August 2016: I. INSURANCE ISSUES

A. In a commercial lease, the covenant of the tenant to insure the landlord along with itself fixes the tenant with the risk of loss. Failure to add the landlord to the policy, as required by the lease, does not allow the...more

Tropical Storm Hermine | A Quick Reference Compliance Guide to Adjusting Storm Related Claims in Florida

..Once a wind storm is named as a hurricane by the National Weather Service, and a warning or watch for any part of Florida is issued, all wind losses in the state from that time until 72 hours after the last warning or watch...more

NJ Supreme Court Holds Intervening Mortgage Takes Priority After Discretionary Advances by Initial Mortgagee

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently clarified its rules regarding mortgage priority, holding that a factoring company’s secured first mortgage can be trumped by a law firm’s later-filed mortgage where the factoring company...more

How to Prevent a Tenant from Removing Valuable Equipment Before They Flee

A landlord may prevent a tenant from taking equipment from the premises by filing a distress writ. Before a landlord files suit for eviction, it should first consider whether there is any equipment on the premises that...more

A State Law Wolf in Federal Common Law Clothing: The Third Circuit Rejects Insured’s Attempt to Expand Causes of Action Under the...

Courts across the country (and particularly since Super Storm Sandy in 2012) have consistently held that, in litigation involving a dispute concerning the investigation, adjustment, or payment of a flood claim under the...more

Goodwin Files Supreme Court Amicus Brief On Behalf Of The Mortgage Industry

On July 25, 2016, Goodwin filed a certiorari-stage amicus brief on behalf of the Mortgage Bankers Association, Consumer Mortgage Coalition, and several other mortgage industry groups. The case involves a Connecticut law that...more

Text on the Dotted Line: A Text Message Can Create a Binding Contract

Here’s another story in the “It never gets easier” file. The Massachusetts Land Court recently decided a case that perhaps we should have all guessed was coming. This is the above the fold headline: Text...more

Early Break Clauses in Lease Renewals

Be aware of the consequences of negotiating an early break right in a renewal lease. The flexibility that this might bring will come at a cost. On a 1954 Act lease renewal, the court has power to determine the rent for the...more

Late Relief From Forfeiture

Commercial landlords know that if a tenant fails to pay rent and the lease contains a forfeiture clause, the landlord can forfeit the lease by peaceable re entry i.e by changing the locks when the tenant is not in the...more

Can I Get a Money Judgment If I Can’t Locate the Defendant or If He Resides Out of State?

If you can’t locate a party and personally serve him, you can follow the less-known method of service, called substitute service. Once you have filed your complaint seeking damages for breach of a lease or guaranty, you are...more

Is Anyone Home? Washington Supreme Court Interprets Two-Step Vacancy Endorsement

Disputes involving “vacancy” exclusions typically involve the appropriate definition of that word. The recently-decided case of Lui v. Essex Ins. Co., 2016 Wash. LEXIS 692 (Wash. June 9, 2016) presents a somewhat different...more

Sometimes even when the borrower wins, she still loses.

Litigation is expensive. If you get sued, winning the case can still be a loss if you can’t recover your attorneys fees from the other side. Mortgages usually contain a “one-way” fee provision requiring the borrower to...more

New York and North Carolina Take a Narrow Approach to Common Interest Doctrine

Brief Summary - The "common interest doctrine" generally protects attorney-client communications, even if such communications are disclosed to a third party, as long as the third party shares a common legal interest with...more

Lessee Escapes Termination

Escondido and Justapor. Next up on Tiny Desk Concert? Good guess, but no. They are the parties in Escondido v. Justapor, a Texas case presenting the perils of lease termination clauses and vaguely-drawn contracts....more

Minnesota Supreme Court Addresses SOL in Construction Defect Suit

In the case of 328 Barry Avenue, LLC v. Nolan Properties Group, LLC, 871 N.W.2d 745 (Minn. 2015), the Supreme Court of Minnesota considered the statute of limitations under Minn. Stat. § 541.051, subd. 1, for actions “arising...more

A Lesson in Maintaining Privity: SCC Resolves Dispute over Interpretation of Alberta Agreement

On May 6, 2016, in Heritage Capital Corp. v. Equitable Trust Co., the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) weighed in on one of the many disputes stemming from the foreclosure proceedings taken with respect to the historic Lougheed...more

Real News - Spring 2016

Earlier this year, David Cameron fired the starting gun on whether Britain should continue its membership of the EU. As we all know, the potential effect of a Brexit is a topic which has divided the opinions not only of our...more

Select Your Expert Witness With Care

The recent case of Flanders Community Centre Limited v Newham London Borough Council has provided us all with a dramatic reminder of how important the role of the expert witness is at trial. Whilst most lease renewal cases...more

Lease Receipts Subject to Business Privilege Taxes After All

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court recently reversed a 2014 Commonwealth Court decision in which the Commonwealth Court had ruled that the Local Tax Enabling Act (“LTEA”) bars local taxing jurisdictions from imposing business...more

7th Circuit Disrupts Commercial Certainty in Lease Terminations; Landlords, We Hate That You Have to Read this Blog Post

There are many tenants that are, shall we say, “problem children.” They pay late, open late, breach, junk up your strip or building, threaten, the works. Sometimes, the landlord finds it easier just to reach a lease...more

Second Circuit Reverses and Remands Trial Court’s Summary Judgment Order in Favor of Morgan Stanley in a CMBS Case

On April 27, 2016, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals vacated and remanded the district court’s summary judgment order entered in favor of defendant Morgan Stanley Mortgage Capital, Inc. in the Southern District of New York....more

Taxpayer Entitled to Section 1033 Gain Exclusion Despite Holding Only a Beneficial Ownership Interest in Condemned Property

In PLR 201609003, the IRS determined that a taxpayer was entitled to exclude gain attributable to the forced transfer of the taxpayer’s ownership of public use facilities, even though the taxpayer did not hold legal title to...more

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