Residential Real Estate Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

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Orrick's Financial Industry Week in Review

Financial Industry Developments - FHFA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Announce Independent Dispute Resolution Program - On February 2, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (the "FHFA") announced that Fannie Mae and...more

Fannie And Freddie – Newly Implemented Independent Dispute Resolution

On February 2, 2016, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae took another step towards helping sellers of loans manage risk more effectively, and in turn, strengthen the home lending system. Through concurrently released...more

West Coast Real Estate Update: Feb. 2016 #1

Residential Communities: Proposed Amendment to Allow Owners' Attorneys at Association Board Meetings - In an attempt to further broaden when a member of a common interest development association can bring his or her...more

Construction Group News: Arbitrators' Award of Attorney's Fees Thrown Out Because the Parties' Agreement Did Not Provide for It

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court recently voided an arbitration panel’s award of attorney’s fees because the terms of the parties’ arbitration agreement did not specifically provide that the prevailing party could be...more

Third Circuit Reaffirms High Burden To Establish Delegation Of Class Arbitrability Determination

Earlier this month, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals reaffirmed its holding that the availability of class arbitration constitutes a question of arbitrability to be decided by courts unless the arbitration agreement...more

Court Of Chancery Explains Arbitration Timelines

This decision explains the timelines for seeking to vacate an arbitration award. It illustrates that an arbitration proceeding has its own rules that the parties better understand or lose their rights....more

The More the Merrier: Court Rejects Waiver Argument, Enforces Arbitration Clause in Consumer Contract

A federal district court in Oklahoma recently rejected a defaulting borrower’s attempt to argue that her lender’s pursuit of foreclosure litigation waived the lender’s right to insist on arbitration of the borrower’s...more

Avoiding Gamesmanship in Appointing Appraisal Umpires

Appraisal has long been utilized as a tool for resolution of disputes over the amount of loss at issue in property insurance claims. Unfortunately, the appraisal process has devolved in recent years. What was once considered...more

CFPB Publishes Semi-Annual Rulemaking Agenda

Just in time for the holidays, the CFPB released its Fall 2015 rulemaking agenda on Friday, November 20. The agenda does not include any major surprises, but it does slightly revise the projected timeline for several highly...more

New York Commercial Division to Tighten Eligibility Requirements For Two Categories of Disputes

Parties and counsel involved in disputes arising out of domestic arbitrations or home improvement contracts soon will have to clear heightened eligibility requirements before being able to proceed in the Commercial Division...more

Washington Supreme Court Clarifies Mandatory Mediation Program Exemption – Holders Score a Washington Victory

The servicer community recently scored an important victory in an opinion issued by the en banc Washington Supreme Court. The decision — Brown v. Wash. State Dep’t. of Commerce, — clarifies the scope of the small lender...more

CFPB Singles Out Class Action Waivers for Elimination from Consumer Financial Arbitration Agreements

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) made clear this week that, in its view, class action waivers should be on the chopping block in the agency’s upcoming rulemaking aimed at regulating the use of arbitration...more

Tennessee Supreme Court Holds That State Unconscionability Law Does Not Implicate Concepcion And Is Not Preempted By FAA

The Supreme Court of Tennessee reversed the lower courts’ rulings that a non-mutual arbitration provision in an installment contract on the sale of a manufactured home was unconscionable and unenforceable. In doing so,...more

New Texas Law Lists Requirements for Condominium Defect Litigation

The Texas Legislature recently passed House Bill 1455 which addresses defect and design claims relative to condominiums and condominium associations. Among the key issues are a series of new steps that must be accomplished...more

Rhode Island General Assembly Clarifies Intent of Foreclosure Mediation Law

In what can only be perceived as a response to a recent Superior Court decision, the Rhode Island General Assembly amended the applicability of the Foreclosure Mediation Law, R.I. Gen. Laws § 34-27-3.2, for the third time in...more

Make the Most of Your Mediation: The Single-Family Construction Defect Case

How can you economically and effectively settle the single-family construction defect case? In a recent mediation involving a homeowner, contractor and 15 subs, the participants used the following practices, which resulted in...more

Utah Legislative Update

The 2015 Legislative Session in Utah came to a close earlier this year and the lien laws once again got a makeover, although not as significant as prior changes the past few years. Prior to this session, the biggest change...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law: June 4, 2015

The Virginia Supreme Court issued opinions on June 4, 2015 during its June term. This term resulted in two opinions affecting Virginia local government law. These opinions addressed defamation alleged from statements by a...more

Hawaii Finds Arbitration Agreement With “Severe Limitations on Discovery” is Unconscionable

Hawaii issued a bold arbitration decision this month. It applied its state contract law to conclude that the parties did not form a clear arbitration agreement, but even if they did, it was unconscionable because it...more

Changes to Arizona Purchaser Dwelling Act Affect Sellers and Construction Professionals

In its last session, the Arizona legislature amended the statutes governing Purchaser Dwelling Actions, A.R.S. 12-1361 et seq., and Homeowner Association Dwelling Actions, A.R.S. 33-2001 et seq., relating to claims against...more

Locke Lord QuickStudy: Rhode Island Superior Court Decision Impacting Servicers

A Rhode Island superior court recently ruled that, pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 34-27-3.2, foreclosing lenders are required to send mediation notices in any foreclosure initiated after the effective date (October 2014)...more

A House of a Different Color: The Changing Role of Appraisal Panels

Minnesota’s severe weather season is here. With that season comes the possibility of hail, heavy rain, lightning, and other weather-related threats that can quickly result in serious property damage to residential and...more

Tennessee Supremes Reject Per Se Unconscionability of Non-Mutual Arbitration Clauses

On June 5, the Tennessee Supreme Court rejected a per se rule of unconscionability for non-mutual arbitration clauses, holding them enforceable if not too-one-sided and commercially reasonable under the...more

Ninth Circuit Directs Court To Vacate Ruling That Disqualified Arbitrator In The Midst Of An Ongoing Arbitration

The dispute at issue in this case involved claims of fraud in the sale of condominium units asserted by unit purchasers against the condominium developer. Arbitration under the AAA was underway between the parties, when it...more

Wisconsin's Supreme Court Creates More Power for the Arbitrator

Most commercial litigators know that a circuit court will enforce an arbitration agreement as long as a given dispute falls within the agreement’s scope. What is or is not within the scope of an agreement, however, has not...more

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