Residential

  • February 15, 2024

    Ex-Atty Who Lied To Grand Jury About Frauds Gets 6.5 Years

    A Manhattan federal judge sentenced a disbarred lawyer to six and a half years in prison Thursday for his 14-year, $17 million real estate Ponzi scheme, for laundering insurance scam proceeds and for his "unheard of" step of lying to a grand jury.

  • February 15, 2024

    Ariz. Panel Votes To Put Public Nuisance Tax Credits On Ballot

    Arizona property owners impacted by deemed public nuisances that local governments fail to address, which would include homelessness, could qualify for tax refunds from the state if voters approve a ballot measure advanced by a House panel.

  • February 15, 2024

    NYC Developer Owes $87M On Defaulted Condo Loans

    A New York federal judge has ordered HFZ Capital Group to hand over $87 million after a borrower defaulted on four loans guaranteed by the beleaguered development firm, denying its claims that an earlier foreclosure sale satisfying some of the loan was commercially unreasonable.

  • February 15, 2024

    9th Circ. Backs Homeowners' Cert. In Allstate Overcharge Suit

    Allstate will have to face a class action accusing it of artificially inflating home insurance premiums for thousands of California properties by double-counting built-in garage space, a Ninth Circuit panel ruled, affirming a lower court's decision.

  • February 15, 2024

    Peer Street Hits Back Against Ch. 7 Conversion Efforts

    Bankrupt real estate investment firm Peer Street Inc. hit back at creditors' motions to convert its case to a Chapter 7 liquidation, saying to the Delaware bankruptcy court that conversion would torpedo its restructuring plan, which has the support of secured creditors and the unsecured creditors committee.

  • February 15, 2024

    Manhattan Landlord Settles Short-Term Rental Claims

    A Manhattan landlord agreed to pay $514,000 to settle a New York state agency's claims accusing him of illegally advertising several of his rent-regulated apartments on the BlueGround short-term rental platform, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced Wednesday.

  • February 15, 2024

    Greenberg Traurig Adds 2 Real Estate Experts From DLA Piper

    Greenberg Traurig LLP has brought on two seasoned DLA Piper construction law experts as its newest shareholders, adding them to the firm's Atlanta office in what Greenberg Traurig called a "strategic move to enhance its full-service, industry-leading real estate capabilities."

  • February 14, 2024

    FinCEN Head Vows No 'Gotcha' Enforcement Of New Rules

    The director of the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network said during a Wednesday congressional hearing that the agency is not pursuing "gotcha" enforcement when it comes to companies complying with new rules for reporting their beneficial ownership information.

  • February 14, 2024

    NY Reps Probe Pro-Housing Certification Amid Budget Talks

    New York state legislators have questioned Gov. Kathy Hochul's proposal to condition access to $650 million in state funding programs on municipalities' ability to obtain a "pro-housing certification," calling the program both aspirational and punitive in a Wednesday hearing.

  • February 14, 2024

    NJ Law Firm Beats Malpractice Claims Over Real Estate Deal

    A New Jersey state appeals court on Wednesday refused to revive legal malpractice claims against a law firm over its involvement in a botched real estate transaction, ruling that the lack of an expert report doomed the lawsuit because the claims were too intricate to be common knowledge.

  • February 14, 2024

    Hawaii Bill Barring Foreigners From Land Deals Moves Ahead

    A bill introduced in Hawaii last month that aims to ban foreigners from buying real estate in the Aloha State passed through a second Senate committee session this week, but the legislation might be tweaked in the coming months to address legal concerns raised by the state's attorney general.

  • February 14, 2024

    Insurer Needn't Defend Landlord From Antitrust MDL

    A Washington state judge has ruled in favor of an insurer in a coverage dispute revolving around nearly 40 antitrust class action claims against landlords that have been combined into a multidistrict litigation case, finding that the insurer owes no defense coverage to an accused property manager.

  • February 14, 2024

    Activist Group Targets Ala. Real Estate Board's Minority Quota

    An activist nonprofit organization sued Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey over the requirement that the state's real estate appraisal board include at least two members of a minority race, arguing that the quota is unconstitutional.

  • February 14, 2024

    Fla. Condo Says Chubb Unit Stalled On $7M Storm Claim

    A Florida Keys condominium has sued a Chubb unit over coverage related to $7.3 million worth of damage sustained during a 2017 hurricane, saying the company breached "industry standards" by dragging its feet on a claim and issued an amount less than what was needed for repairs.

  • February 14, 2024

    Austin To File Suit Expediting Embattled Light Rail Financing

    Ongoing litigation challenging the financing of the planned light rail system in Austin, Texas, is likely to be fast-tracked to a courtroom this spring as the city prepares to file bond validation litigation and get a final say on whether its debt structure is legal.

  • February 14, 2024

    Enviro Orgs Planning EPA Suit Over Phosphate-Mining Waste

    A coalition of conservation, public health and environmental justice groups told the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency they plan to sue it for failing to respond to a 3-year-old petition asking for stronger regulations governing toxic and radioactive phosphogypsum waste generated by the fertilizer industry.

  • February 14, 2024

    Insurer Notice Law Applies Retroactively, Fla. Panel Rules

    A Florida state appeals panel affirmed the dismissal of a property insurance dispute by homeowners against their insurer, saying Wednesday lawmakers intended for a statute requiring policyholders to notify a state agency before suing an insurer for breach of contract to apply retroactively.

  • February 14, 2024

    Colo. House Panel OKs Local-Option Property Tax Credits

    Local governments in Colorado could establish property tax incentive programs to address local shortcomings in real property usage under legislation approved by a House panel.

  • February 14, 2024

    Invitation Homes Plans To Spend Up To $1B On Homes In 2024

    Single-family rental giant Invitation Homes expects it will acquire between $600 million and $1 billion worth of homes this year, and it plans to continue wooing home construction companies to sell to its business, executives said Wednesday.

  • February 14, 2024

    Homebuilder, Insurer Settle Coverage Suit Over Fatal Fire

    A builder accused of causing the deaths of two people by failing to install working smoke detectors in a home it constructed has settled its dispute with an insurer over $1 million in coverage for underlying litigation related to the deaths in California federal court.

  • February 13, 2024

    $19M Mortgage Relief Case Is 1st Calif. DFPI, FTC Joint Win

    The Federal Trade Commission and the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation have secured a $19 million judgment against four individuals and their corporations for running a mortgage assistance relief services scam, the agencies announced Tuesday.

  • February 13, 2024

    9th Circ. Revives Challenge To Calif. Rent Control Law

    The Ninth Circuit on Tuesday revived a mobile home park owner's challenge of a California rent control law, saying it adequately pled standing based on a preenforcement injury because it could either raise rents and face an enforcement action or maintain rents and conform to a law that may not apply.

  • February 13, 2024

    Foreclosure Deal Support Rebuts Collusion Claim, Attys Say

    Former owners of tax-foreclosed homes urged a Michigan federal judge Tuesday to tune out objectors who call the class settlement a "textbook" collusive deal, saying the class's enthusiastic response disproves the allegations.

  • February 13, 2024

    6th Circ. Says Housing Authority Head's Firing Was Justified

    The Sixth Circuit has sided with the Covington, Kentucky, housing authority against a suit filed by an executive director who was let go after repeatedly clashing with the authority's board of commissioners.

  • February 13, 2024

    $1.37M Conn. Contract Suit Revived After Counsel Secured

    A federal breach of contract lawsuit arising from the construction of an apartment complex in Hartford can proceed now that the plaintiff has secured new counsel, a judge in the District of Connecticut ruled Tuesday in overturning her own decision to kill the case last October.

Expert Analysis

  • Property Owner Considerations Around Electric Vehicle Bans

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    In light of a property management company's recent ban on electric vehicles in Canada, it's worth considering how similar bans might fare in Florida and other U.S. states, and the legal ramifications that could potentially arise, say Gerardo Ortega and Gary Kaleita at Lowndes.

  • Trump NY Fraud Trial Shows Civil, Criminal Case Differences

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    Former President Donald Trump’s civil fraud trial currently unfolding in New York provides a reminder that civil bench trials can be just as damaging, if not more so, than criminal prosecutions, due to several key elements of civil litigation procedure, says retired attorney David Moskowitz.

  • Why NYC Building Owners Shouldn't Ignore Emissions Rule

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    New rules from the New York City Department of Buildings clarify the previously vague good faith efforts that building owners may make to mitigate penalties for not complying with a major carbon emission law that takes effect in January, and should discourage owners from simply paying the fines instead of decarbonizing, says William McCracken at Moritt Hock.

  • What NJ's Green Remediation Guidance Means For Cleanups

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    Recent guidance from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection promoting greener approaches to restoring contaminated sites demonstrates the state's commitment to sustainability and environmental justice — but could also entail more complexity, higher costs and longer remediation timelines, say J. Michael Showalter and Bradley Rochlen at ArentFox Schiff.

  • A New Path Forward For Surplus Land Owners In Calif.

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    A new California law signed last month enables some religious institutions and nonprofit colleges to build affordable housing on surplus land, and its requirements — which are more manageable than they may appear — will support long-term benefits including good housing and the survival of worthy institutions, says Stephen Wilson at Withers.

  • Inside Bank Regulators' Community Lending Law Overhaul

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    The federal banking agencies' recently finalized changes to the Community Reinvestment Act not only account for the gradual shift to an environment where lending and deposit-taking are primarily conducted online, but also implement other updates such as diversity initiatives and a new series of lending tests, say attorneys at Norton Rose.

  • A Bird's Eye View Of NYC's New Parapet Inspection Law

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    Building owners in New York City should be ready for the city's new parapet inspection requirements going into effect in January, which will likely necessitate additional construction work for countless buildings not previously subject to formal inspections, says Benjamin Fox Tracy at Braverman Greenspun.

  • AI Isn't The Wild West, So Prepare Now For Bias Risks

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    In addition to President Joe Biden's recent historic executive order on safe, secure and trustworthy artificial intelligence, there are existing federal and state laws prohibiting fraud, defamation and even discrimination, so companies considering using or developing AI should take steps to minimize legal and business risks, says civil rights attorney Farhana Khera.

  • AI's Baked-In Bias: What To Watch Out For

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    The federal AI executive order is a direct acknowledgment of the perils of inherent bias in artificial intelligence systems, and highlights the need for legal professionals to thoroughly vet AI systems, including data and sources, algorithms and AI training methods, and more, say Jonathan Hummel and Jonathan Talcott at Ballard Spahr.

  • Calif. Ruling May Open Bankruptcy Trustees To Tort Liability

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    In Martin v. Gladstone, a recent California appellate court decision, the application of tort concepts to bankruptcy trustees could pose a new concern for trustees and federal receivers when controlling and maintaining commercial property, says Jarrett Osborne-Revis at Buchalter.

  • 5th Circ. Ruling May Beget Fraud Jury Instruction Appeals

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    The Fifth Circuit’s recent U.S. v. Greenlaw decision, disapproving disjunctive fraudulent-intent jury instructions, will likely spawn appeals in mail, wire and securities fraud cases, but defendants must show that their deception furthered ends other than taking the victim's property, says Charles Fowler at McKool Smith.

  • Considerations For Navigating Mixed-Use Developments

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    As mixed-use developments continue to rise in popularity, developers considering this approach to urban planning must be aware of key considerations ranging from title and zoning laws to proper engagement with stakeholders, says Mehdi Sinaki at Michelman & Robinson.

  • 1st Tax Easement Convictions Will Likely Embolden DOJ, IRS

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    After recent convictions in the first criminal tax fraud trial over allegedly abusive syndicated conservation easements, the IRS and U.S. Department of Justice will likely pursue other promoters for similar alleged conspiracies — though one acquittal may help attorneys better evaluate their clients' exposure, say Bill Curtis and Lauren DeSantis-Then at Polsinelli.