Residential Real Estate Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Civil Procedure

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Should You Litigate In Court or Arbitrate the Dispute?

Faced with the rising costs of doing business in our increasingly litigious society, today's employers are looking at any way to manage fees and costs associated with resolving disputes over employment decisions. Some of the...more

Divided Third Circuit Panel Holds That Waiver Of Arbitration Clause Does Not Apply To Futile Arguments

On July 13, 2016, a U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit panel held that an arbitration clause is not waived simply because a party failed to raise a futile argument. The case arose out of a putative class action...more

Disgruntled Timeshare Owner’s Bid for Class Arbitration Thwarted

On August 30, the Northern District of California thwarted a disgruntled timeshare owner’s attempt to arbitrate her dispute against a timeshare developer on a classwide basis. A timeshare purchaser alleged that Wyndham, the...more

Class Action Arbitration after Dell Webb

Agreeing to arbitrate disputes, in lieu of traditional litigation, is not a new phenomenon. As consumers, we all contractually agree to arbitrate disputes on an almost daily basis. While not everyone may read the entire...more

Klesla et al. v. Wittenberg

Court did not abuse its discretion in denying a motion to confirm arbitration award that asked for more than was awarded. Kleslas sued for (1) the return of their residential lease security deposit, (2) statutory...more

Court Confirms Interim Award Of Injunctive Relief But Refuses To Confirm Non-Final Opinion Of Arbitrator That Arbitration Was...

In a real estate broker commission dispute, the arbitrator had granted injunctive relief in favor of the plaintiff broker, ordering a percentage of the sale of certain real estate to be placed in an escrow account pending the...more

South Carolina Supreme Court Decision Impacts Enforceability of Arbitration Provisions in New Residential Construction Sales...

On July 6, 2016, the South Carolina Supreme Court filed its Opinion No. 27645, captioned Smith v. D.R. Horton, Inc., in which it affirmed the Court of Appeals' refusal to compel arbitration between new home purchasers and the...more

Construction Defect Debate to be Heard by Colorado Supreme Court

The construction defects case of Vallagio at Inverness Residential Condominium Association, Inc. v. Metropolitan Homes, Inc., et al. has garnered national attention since the Colorado Court of Appeals' decision in May 2015,...more

CFPB Field Hearing May Unveil New Rule on Arbitration Agreements

The CFPB is continuing its march towards a new rule governing the use of arbitration clauses in consumer lending contracts. On April 20, the Bureau announced its next step will be to conduct a field hearing in Albuquerque,...more

Fourth Circuit: Courts, Not Arbitrators, Decide If Arbitration Agreement Authorizes Class-Wide Arbitration

A unanimous panel of the Fourth Circuit has held Del Webb Communities, Inc. v. Carlson that the question whether an arbitration agreement authorizes class-wide arbitration is for the courts, not an arbitrator, to...more

Fourth Circuit Finds Availability Of Class Arbitration Is Question For Courts, Not Arbitrators

Joining the Sixth and Third Circuit Courts of Appeals, the Fourth Circuit this week held that “whether an arbitration clause permits class arbitration is a gateway question of arbitrability for the court.” Dell Web...more

And in this corner: Judicial referees as alternatives to juries in California

More than 10 years ago, California’s highest court held that pre-dispute contractual jury waivers were not enforceable. However, the Court directed contract parties to two safe havens from juries: arbitration and judicial...more

For Whom the Bell Tolls - Only a Complete Litigation Stay Extends the Five Year Rule For Bringing a Case to Trial

On February 25, 2016 the Supreme Court of California in Gaines v. Fidelity National Title Insurance Company, et al. (Court of Appeal B244961, Superior Court Case BC361768), affirmed the lower courts’ holdings that a partial...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

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

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

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

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

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