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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

Stop Notices and Mechanic's Liens: Construction Lenders' Nightmares

Historically low interest rates have led to the substantial growth in real estate lending, especially construction lending. Unfortunately, the lead article in the Business Section of the January 28, 2016, issue of the Los...more

Application Deadline for the CITF Grant and Loan Program – February 26, 2016

The deadline to submit applications for Community Infrastructure and Tourism Fund (CITF) grants and loans is February 26, 2016. There is an estimated $6,600,000 available in grants and loans for approved applicants. The...more

California Governor’s Office Releases Updated CEQA Guidelines Proposal on SB 743 Implementation

On January 20, 2016, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) released a new draft proposal for implementing Senate Bill 743 (Steinberg 2013) (SB 743), which would require traffic analysis to be based on vehicle...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

Massachusetts State Building Code Update: 9th Edition Now Anticipated to be Issued with Concurrency Period

The following is a January, 2016 updated version of the G&S Advisory originally published in October, 2015 - The Massachusetts State Board of Building Regulations and Standards (the “State Board”) has announced that it...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

Business Rates: Looking Ahead in 2016 – The Good, The Bad and The Maybe

Business rates are charged on the majority of commercial properties, such as shops and offices, and represent one of the largest overheads for businesses. They are calculated using the rateable value of the property (the...more

California Supreme Court Shifts Gears on “Reverse CEQA”

The California Supreme Court has shifted gears on so-called “reverse CEQA” under the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”)....more

New regulations will oblige owners of buildings in Scotland to improve or report on energy efficiency of buildings

Section 63 of the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 provides for regulations to be made for: (1) the assessment of the energy performance of existing non-domestic buildings and greenhouse gas emissions from such buildings;...more

Amendment to Illinois Mechanics Lien Act Authorizes Bonding Over of Mechanics Liens Claims

As of January 1, 2016, an amendment to the Illinois Mechanics Lien Act, 770 ILCS. 60/38.1, allows parties with an interest in real estate to substitute an eligible surety bond for a claim for mechanics lien as security for...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

CFPB construction loan “fact sheet” falls far short of necessary guidance

The CFPB has issued what it calls a “fact sheet” regarding the disclosure of construction-to-permanent loans under the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule, which the CFPB refers to as the Know Before You Owe rule....more

A Good Reminder: State and Federal Wildlife Laws Have Severe Penalties for Harm to Endangered Species

Welcome to the New Year! I have decided to declare 2016 to be the year of the endangered species. Why? We ended 2015 with a bang by seeing how serious the take prohibition in the California Fish and Game Code can be for fully...more

Supreme Court of Texas Rules Installation of Faulty Product Not Covered by Standard CGL Policy

In U.S. Metals, Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Group, Inc., No. 14-0753, 2015 Tex. LEXIS 1081 (Tex. Dec. 4, 2015) the Supreme Court of Texas ruled that installation of a faulty component does not cause physical injury to the...more

New Right-of-Way Regulations on Indian Lands

Every once in a while, infrastructure projects we’re working on involve traversing Indian lands. For those of you involved in such projects, you should take a look at the Final Rule published by the Department of the...more

Colorado Construction Monitor - Winter 2015 / 2016

Construction activity in Denver (and throughout Colorado) remains remarkably high. Sherman & Howard's Construction Index rose to 119.15 for the quarter, which establishes a new record high for the Index. The previous high was...more

EB-5 Immigrant Visa program extension signed into law — without any changes. EB-5 financing continues for new development...

Hotel lawyer with great news for developers: the EB-5 immigrant visa financing program has been renewed — approved by Congress and signed by the President. It is being continued without change through September 30, 2016....more

Top Ten Stories in California Construction for 2015

Cranes, cement trucks, and street closures seem to be everywhere these days, especially in city centers such as San Francisco and Los Angeles. After the meltdown of 2006, real estate development went into hibernation for...more

Construction Continues To Improve, But Are We In A Boom?

Cranes, cement trucks, and street closures seem to be everywhere these days, especially in city centers such as San Francisco and Los Angeles. After the meltdown of 2006, real estate development went into hibernation for...more

Municipal Bidding Thresholds for 2016

Effective January 1, 2016 - The Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry has published the municipal authority and municipality bidding thresholds for 2016 under Act 90 of 2011. Under Act 90, the bidding thresholds...more

Worth the Wait? The California Supreme Court Rules that CEQA Does Not Require An Analysis of the Environment's Impacts on a...

On December 17, 2015, the California Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District (No. S213478). The sole question before the Court...more

Special Alert: Building Moratorium Initiative

As you may have learned from the news, a group called Coalition to Preserve L.A. (CPLA) is seeking to place an Initiative on the ballot in 2016 that would establish a City-wide building moratorium. The key provisions...more

No Contractor Is An Island: Florida Court Narrowly Applies “Your Work” Exclusion

When an insurer issues a Commercial General Liability policy to a contractor, the policy typically excludes coverage for the cost of repairing or replacing the contractor’s own defective work, but covers the cost of repairing...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

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