News & Analysis as of

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

Merger Price Is Best Evidence of Fair Value in Appraisal Action

The practice of a hedge fund buying shares in a Delaware corporation upon the announcement of a cash-out merger to then exercise appraisal rights, sometimes referred to as “appraisal arbitrage,” has generated controversy....more

Caltrans’ Highway 101 Overpass Condemnation Case Ends in Split Decision

For several years, we’ve been following an eminent domain lawsuit in Marin County involving Caltrans’ acquisition of 34 acres for a $29.7 million interchange project at the Redwood Sanitary Landfill, which would widen the...more

Five Considerations Before Selling a Vineyard or Winery

Whether to sell a vineyard or winery is one of the most significant decisions an owner will make. There are financial, career, lifestyle, and other factors that go into the choice, and the calculation is different for each...more

Court Of Chancery Accepts Merger Price In Appraisal Action

When the merger price is the product of a full market check by a disinterested Board without interference from a controller and is approved by the stockholders, the Court of Chancery is inclined to give that price weight in...more

M&A Update: Chancery Court Finds Merger Price to be Most Persuasive Factor in Appraisal Action

In a recent decision in an appraisal action, the Delaware Chancery Court reaffirmed the Court’s reluctance to substitute its own calculation of the “fair value” of a target company’s stock for the purchase price derived...more

The Growing Power of Fair Price and Process in Delaware Appraisal Actions

On October 21, 2015, the Delaware Court of Chancery issued a post-trial opinion in an appraisal action in which it yet again found that the merger price was the most reliable indicator of fair value. Vice Chancellor...more

Contributions of Art: Elements of a “Boring” Charitable Contribution Deduction

This article highlights some of the more critical income tax issues that taxpayers and their advisors must address when claiming the charitable contribution deduction for the gift of art to art museums. This article does not...more

What's Market? Update: Litigation

In In re Appraisal of, Inc., C.A. No. 8173-VCG (Del. Ch. 2015), the Delaware Court of Chancery held in connection with an appraisal proceeding brought by a dissenting shareholder that the best indication of the...more

Washington Federal Court Finds Assignment Of Replacement Cost Holdback Not Permitted Prior To Actual Rebuilding Or Replacement

In Sherard v. Safeco Ins. Co. of Am., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138548 (W.D. Wash. Oct. 9, 2015), Safeco Insurance (“Safeco”) issued a landlord insurance policy to Plaintiffs, Carol Sherard and Glenn Sherard for a rental house in...more

CFPB Guidance Cautions Against Marketing Services Agreements

On October 8, 2015, the CFPB issued compliance Bulletin 2015-05 cautioning against the use of marketing services agreements (MSAs), due to the “substantial legal and regulatory risk” of violating the Real Estate Settlement...more

Waivers of Rights to Compensation are Enforceable in Eminent Domain Actions

It’s not every day you’re involved in a successful eminent domain case before the California Court of Appeal. It’s even more unusual when the case deals with a number of interesting legal issues, such as the enforceability...more

CFPB Issues RESPA and Marketing Services Agreements Compliance Bulletin

On October 8, 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a compliance bulletin concerning marketing services agreements (MSAs) under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA). RESPA - RESPA...more

Indiana Tax Court Reverses Property Tax Ruling Based on Assessor’s “Trial by Ambush”

Even in a small claims proceeding, the Indiana Board of Tax Review must “uphold the fundamental tenet of our judicial system that neither party be subjected to a trial by ambush.” In RJK Trust v. LaPorte County Assessor...more

Fifth Circuit Rejects FCA Case Based On Purported Improper Legal Billings

Although litigants frequently contend that the opposing party’s arguments are without factual or legal support, it is uncommon and unconventional for a litigant to contend that the opposing party has violated the FCA by...more

Proceed With Caution – Indiana Property Tax Appeals: Receipt Of Tax Bill Triggered Right To Appeal; Relevancy Objection Overruled;...

In Alvarado v. Lake County Assessor (Aug. 5, 2015), the Indiana Board of Tax Review considered a number of procedural and evidentiary issues in ruling on the 2012 assessment appeal for a residential property....more

Insurance Coverage – Fire Insurance – Power of Appraisal Panel

Lee v California Capital Ins. Co. - Court of Appeal, First District (June 18, 2015) - All fire insurance policies issued in California must be on a standard form that includes an appraisal provision as set forth in...more

Looking Back on 2014: The 7 Most Important eDiscovery Cases in Delaware - Part 4

In the ISN case, the Petitioners filed a Petition for Appraisal, requesting that the Court make an independent valuation of the company under Section 262. In this Motion to Compel hearing, the Respondent called to the stand...more

Louisiana Court Grants Summary Judgment In Favor Of Insurer Based On Application Of Cooperation Clause

In Johnson v. GeoVera Specialty Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 113838 (E.D. La. Aug. 27, 2015), the court granted summary judgment in favor of an insurer based upon the cooperation clause of the insurer’s...more

Facing a Condemnation? Take These 5 Initial Steps

Unlike most types of litigation, a direct condemnation case generally assures the owner of at least some compensation for the property taken. So when an owner approaches an attorney, it’s usually to see if it’s possible to...more

Changes in Real Estate legislation, Q2 2015 - Overview of the most important changes for the second quarter of 2015 in Russian...

Changes at the federal level - RF Federal Law ? 184-FZ “On Amendments to the RF Federal Law “On the State Real Estate Cadaster” and Article 6 of the RF Federal Law “On Special Economic Zones (SEZ) in the Russian...more

Mergers & Acquisitions Glossary

This Glossary contains many of the important terms and definitions used in the M&A world. The Glossary is not exhaustive, however. Like most areas of the law, M&A is a highly complex subject that involves several legal and...more

Appraisal Claims Dismissed Due to Custodial Banks' Technical Acts

Despite being a court of equity, there are certain instances where the Delaware Court of Chancery demands "strict compliance" with procedural provisions irrespective of the potential for an inequitable outcome. For example,...more

Court Of Chancery Permits Partial Settlement Of Appraisal Case

Mannix v. Plasmanet, Inc., C.A. No. 10502-CB (July 21, 2015) - This decision permits non-appearing dissenters to settle their appraisal claims over the objection of the appraisal petitioner....more

Property Tax Notices (TRIM notices) are arriving in your mailbox shortly!

Property Appraisers in Florida will send out Truth in Millage (TRIM) notices to all property owners at some point in the next two weeks. These TRIM notices will show the property tax assessments and market values for 2015,...more

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