Blog Archives

“Adverse” Element for Adverse Possession/Prescriptive Easements

One of the factors for obtaining a prescriptive easement or adverse possession is that the use of land must be “adverse” to the true property owner. What does “adverse” mean? The term “adverse use” “means only that the owner has not expressly consented to [the use] by lease or license….” (Felgenhauer v. Soni (2004) 121 Cal.App.4th 445, 450, 17 Cal.Rptr.3d 135 (Felgenhauer).) The 2006 case of Aaron v. Dunham, 137 Cal.App.4th 1244, provides insight on what the adverse term means.   It provides as follows: “Adverse use” means only that the claimant’s use of the property was made without the explicit or implicit permission of the landowner. As explained in Felgenhauer: “Claim of right does not require a belief or claim that the use is legally justified. [Citation.] It simply

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Posted in Adverse Posession, Prescriptive Easement

Coaching a Witness During Deposition is Prohibited!

We have been taking a lot of depositions lately and, in so doing, we have noticed a lot of improper coaching of witnesses during deposition by opposing counsel. This caused us to revisit the Los Angeles County Superior Court’s Rules Guidelines for Civility in Litigation. In particular, Appendix 3.A provides: (8) While a question is pending, counsel should not, through objections or otherwise, coach the deponent or suggest answers. What does this mean? It means that when a lawyer asks a question the deponent (the person answering the question) must answer the question only subject to the deponent’s lawyer’s objection. The lawyer cannot take or break or attempt to go off the record while the question is pending. That is completely improper. The deponent must

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Posted in Depositions, Litigation

How Technology Can Facilitate Court Appearances

With the advent of technology, litigators do not have to be restricted to practicing in their immediate geographical vicinity. For example, litigators have the option of appearing for most court appearances remotely via CourtCall or even via video conference calls. Similarly, to save clients time and money, attorneys can conduct remotely via video conferencing technology. As another example, many courts are in the process of transitioning to electronic filing, which has made it far easier for attorneys to instantly file documents in a cost effective manner. Indeed, attorneys can even access copies of filed documents without ever leaving their office. Schorr Law routinely uses technology to represent clients in real estate matters in all areas of both Northern and Southern California, including, but not limited to, Los Angeles

Posted in Court / Trial

Statutes of Limitation for Quiet Title Claims

At the outset of brining or defending any claim involving use and possession of real property it is always a good idea to examine the applicable statutes of limitation. This is true because they can either present a possible winning defense or, if you are the plaintiff, they can provide a potential pitfall that you have to carefully navigate around. For example, for quiet title claims there is no particular statutes of limitation. The limitations period is instead determined by the underlying theory of relief – fraud, adverse possession, mistake, trespass, etc. We frequently see statute of limitation defenses rear their head in quiet title claims where the person out of possession seeks to quiet title after a period of time where they were not

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Posted in Litigation, Quiet Title

Amending a Pleading – Kittredge Sports

What do Mammoth Lakes, California, skiing and ski rentals have to do with amending complaints?  The answer arises out of a case Kittredge Sports Company v. Superior Court (1989) 213 Cal. App. 3d 1045, a case that provides guidance on amending the complaint.  We thought this case was interesting because many of us enjoy spending time and Mammoth Lakes and frequent Kittredge Sports on main street. In this case, Kittredge rented skis to a skier who ultimately injured her knee when her binding failed to release.  She filed a claim against Kittredge based on negligence and personal injury.  Kittredge in turn filed an action against Marker for breach of contract (the binding maker).   Kittredge later sought  to amend the complaint to add causes of action for breach of

Posted in Litigation

Unlawful Detainer: Evictions Pending Appeal

Landlords who successfully litigate unlawful detainer actions should think twice before evicting the tenant from the premises.  This is because tenants normally have a right to appeal the judgment.  Indeed, this issue was front and center in Breach Break Equities, LLC v. Lowell. The facts of the case are simple.  The trial court entered judgment against the tenant and issued a writ of possession.  Subsequently, the tenant appealed the judgment.  Nonetheless, while the appeal was pending the landlord evicted the tenant from the premises and sold the tenant’s property to a third party.  (See Breach Break Equities, LLC v. Lowell  (2016) 6 Cal.App.5th 847, 850-51.) The California Court of Appeal heard the case and reversed the possession order.  Moreover, because the landlord prematurely evicted the tenant the Court of Appeal

Posted in Commercial Lease, Commercial Lease Unlawful Detainer, Leases, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles, Residential Lease, Residential Lease Unlawful Detainer, Writ of Possession

What is a Homestead Exemption?

A homestead exemption operates to protect a homeowner’s equity in their home from a forced sale – it effectively “exempts” a portion of the homeowner’s equity in their residence from creditors trying to enforce a judgment. There are two types of exemptions: (1) the automatic residential exemption (“Automatic Homestead”); and (2) the declared homestead (“Declared Homestead”). Homeowners automatically receive the benefits of an Automatic Homestead. The Automatic Homestead arises by operation of law when a party’s principal dwelling is subject to a forced sale. In contrast, the Declared Homestead requires that a party record a declaration stating, among other things, that the residence is the principal dwelling of the declarant or his or her spouse and that the declarant or his or her spouse resided

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Posted in Homestead, Judgment, Judgment Collection, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

Partition and Adverse Possession

A typical partition case involves two or more co-owners having a dispute about whether their co-owned property should be sold.  Our clients frequently entrust is with helping them resolve these ownership disputes. Sometimes, however, we notice interesting facts in the case that allow us to seek more than our client’s share of ownership based on record title. This occurs when one owner may be able to show that they have adversely possessed their co-owner’s share of the property. When this occurs, we look to an abundance of legal authorities that describe the interplay between partition cases and adverse possession in the co-tenancy context. One case that we want to highlight is Zolezzi v. Michelis (1948) 86 Cal.App.2d 827, 832.  In Zolezzi, the Court found adverse possession by

Posted in Adverse Posession, Joint Tenancy, Litigation, Partition, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

Zachary Schorr Chosen as Winner of the 2017 Corporate Intl Global Award

We are pleased to announce that Corporate INTL has notified Schorr Law that our Lead Attorney Zachary Schorr has been chosen as the winner of the 2017 Corporate Intl Magazine Global Award: ‘Real Estate Litigation Lawyer of the Year in California’. This is the second year in a row that Mr. Schorr has received this honor.  The Corporate INTL awards are given to attorneys who have been successful for the past year and have shown excellence in both expertise and service. Mr. Schorr is happy to receive this award, and is honored to be recognized as such. Thank you Corporate Intl! Our top rated and awarded attorneys can help you with various real estate matters, including but not limited to: purchase and sale disputes (non-disclosure, escrow deposit disputes, contracts, specific

Posted in Escrow Deposit Disputes, Litigation, Non-Disclosure, Ownership, Partition, Purchase and Sale, Quiet Title, Real Estate Attorney, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles, Specific Performance, Wins

6 Celebrities Who Faced Eviction

  Normal everyday citizens are not the only ones who have real estate problems. Celebrities have them, too. Sometimes, its the celebs who are most famous, and who we would least expect to, who go through these issues. Behold, here are five (or six) celebrities who faced eviction at some point in their lives. Tyga In 2016, Hip-hop star Tyga was reportedly being evicted (again) from his then home in the Hollywood Hills. Tyga had been allegedly late on payments, resulting in roughly $70,000 in back rent (rent was $17,000 a month). Later this year, it was said that the Landlord had reached a settlement with the hip-hop star. Kim Zolciak In 2014, The Real Housewives of Atlanta star, Kim Zolciak, was allegedly facing eviction from

Posted in Leases, Lien On Property, Residential Lease, Residential Lease Unlawful Detainer

Zachary D. Schorr’s Expert Appearance on the Dr. Phil Show

Zachary D. Schorr’s Expert Appearance on ABC’s Nightline

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Zachary Schorr Superlawyers

Zachary D. Schorr has been named to the Southern California Super Lawyers (Rising Stars) list for attorneys in Real Estate for 5 straight years - 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state receive this honor. In 2016 he was also included as one of the top 100 lawyers in Southern California in this category. The selection for this respected list is made by the research team at Super Lawyers.

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