Residential Real Estate Constitutional Law

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California District Court Denies Certification Where Putative Class Members Lack Standing and Plaintiff Fails to Conduct Extensive...

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of California recently denied class certification in a case alleging wrongdoing by a loan servicer in connection with the Home Affordable Modification Program...more

St. Louis County Ordinance Requiring Pre-Foreclosure Mediation Unconstitutional, Missouri Supreme Court Holds

The Missouri Supreme Court recently ruled that a St. Louis County ordinance requiring lenders to mediate with borrowers prior to foreclosure was void ab initio because it was not directed to a matter of purely municipal...more

Illinois Supreme Court Debates Constitutional Challenge to Rental Housing Support Program

During its September term, the Illinois Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Marks v. Vanderventer, a direct appeal from the Circuit Court after the court’s order finding the fee collection provisions of a “Rental Housing...more

Seventh Circuit: Plaintiffs Lacked Standing to Challenge Tax Exemption for Ministerial Rental Allowances

In November 2013, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin declared unconstitutional Section 107(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, which excludes from gross income rental allowances paid to ministers as...more

Freedom From Religion Foundation: 7th Circuit Reminds That Standing Is Every Plaintiff's Cross to Bear

There is something to be said for not paying your taxes. At least, that is one lesson that the plaintiffs may have learned from the Seventh Circuit’s opinion last Thursday in Freedom from Religion Foundation, Inc. v. Lew, No....more

The Limits of CEQA Mitigation – Recent Judicial Applications of Nollan and Dolan

Perhaps foremost among the judicially recognized fundamental constraints on lead agencies’ power to impose various types of mitigation measures on project approvals in the CEQA process is the “doctrine of unconstitutional...more

Federal Court States Rationale for U.S. Take of California Land a “Sham”

The question now is, is the court’s statement merely a bump in the road or a roadblock? The United States filed the eminent domain action seeking to condemn certain access rights so it could increase its profitability when...more

Eminent Domain Begins for County of Sacramento Road Projects

As traffic continues to increase and roadways become more congested, California’s transportation infrastructure needs to keep up. While there has been a concerted focus on alternative methods of transportation (such as rail,...more

Blog: HOA Liens Reign Supreme Under Nevada’s Interpretation of the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act

Nevada is one of many states that adopted some iteration of the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act, an act designed in part to aid homeowners’ associations (“HOAs”) in recovering delinquent fees from their members. As...more

Ohio District Court Limits American Pipe Tolling Doctrine

The District Court for the Southern District of Ohio recently limited the American Pipe tolling doctrine in a fraud suit arising out of the sale of residential mortgage-backed securities (“RMBS”). Plaintiffs’ 2011 Ohio...more

10 Answers to Those Nagging Mechanics Lien Questions Keeping You Up at Night. Kind of

Construction lawyers may not ponder the great questions in life. We leave that to the estate planning attorneys. But ponder we do. And the next case, as I’ll explain below, “kind of” answers 10 important...more

Coastal Commission’s Public Access Easement Found to Be A Taking

In a published decision, the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District rejected the California Coastal Commission’s (“Commission”) finding that there is no rational nexus or rough proportionality between...more

Coastal Commission Erred In Finding Property Owner Is Stuck With Unconstitutional Dedication Condition

In an opinion on rehearing, the Second District Court of Appeal overturned a California Coastal Commission decision that a condition of a county-issued coastal development permit could not be eliminated by a second coastal...more

First Department Affirms Dismissal of Ambac’s Contract Claims Against EMC

On October 16, the Appellate Division, First Department of the Supreme Court of New York affirmed the dismissal of Ambac Assurance Corporation’s breach of contract claims against EMC Mortgage arising out of an RMBS...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending October 10 & October 17, 2014

REAL PROPERTY CASES - - Sinkhole Loss/Statute of Limitations: homeowners’ lawsuit was barred by the one-year statute of limitations, even though lawsuit was filed promptly after FIGA processed the claim and made a...more

Texas Supreme Court Argument Preview (10/14)

No. 13-0199, Steadfast Financial LLC v. Bradshaw - This is an oil & gas royalty dispute in which a non-participating royalty owner sued the owner of the executive right for failure to obtain a higher royalty interest in a new...more

Contractors: Beware the Subordination Clause

Did you know that California is the only state in the country in which mechanics liens are a constitutional right? Tis true. Article XIV of the California Constitution states: Mechanics, persons furnishing...more

Religious Institutions: October 2014

Timely Topics - Church splits and property disputes are not new, but they have certainly grown in number in recent years. In the seminal case on church property disputes, Watson v. Jones, 80 U.S. (13 Wall.) 679, 20 L....more

New York State Court Rules That Darwin Has Duty to Defend but AIG Does Not, for Same Risk, Based on Differing Policy Language

New York state court Judge Shirley Werner Kornreich recently ruled that American International Group, Inc. (“AIG”) didn’t have to pay certain defense costs for various suits brought against QBE Holdings, Inc. and its...more

City’s Handling of Application for Subdivision Approvals May Trigger Liability Under Fair Housing Act

The Federal Fair Housing Act (“FHA”) prohibits discrimination in the sale or rental of housing, including discriminatory land use decisions, on account of race, color, religion, sex, national origin or familial status. The...more

Texas Supreme Court Argument Preview (9/14)

13-0080, RSUI Indemnity Co. v. The Lynd Co. - The primary issue in this insurance coverage case is how the policy limits of an excess property insurance policy should be calculated. The policy at issue covers multiple...more

Yet Another New Case On Standing to Foreclose

In July, the 2d DCA overturned a bank’s summary judgment on the grounds that the bank failed to rebut the defense of lack of standing. The frequency and similarity of these cases makes me think of the movie Goundhog Day!...more

Editorial: Drowning in Place: Local Government Costs and Liabilities for Flooding Due to Sea-level Rise

Many areas of Florida are experiencing increased tidal flooding due to sea-level rise (SLR). Florida has experienced eight to nine inches of SLR over the past 100 years. The roughly four and one-half inches of rise in the...more

Southeast State & Local Tax: Important Developments - August 2014

The Williams Mullen Southeast State and Local Tax (SESALT) team is pleased to provide you with a comprehensive recap of important tax developments around the Southeast....more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: August 2014 #2

former marital home entitled to homestead exemption under article X, section 4 of Florida Constitution because (1) decedent and former wife still owned home as tenants in common at time of his death; (2) decedent’s sons, whom...more

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