Blog Archives

What is a Partition Action?

What is a Partition Action? Sometimes, when two (or more) people own the same piece of real property, they will disagree on what to do with the property.  One common example occurs when a parent passes away and leaves a piece of real property to her/his three children.  If the children cannot agree on what to do with the real property, one of them may eventually be forced to file a suit for partition of the property. A partition action asks the court, pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 872.210, to divide the real property fairly between the different owners.  For a property with a home or other development on it, this usually means selling the property and dividing the proceeds of the

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Posted in Ownership, Partition, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles, Wills / Trusts

Contingencies in Purchase and Sale Contracts

  In real estate terminology a contingency is a part of a real estate contract that essentially provides the buyer with a contingency or condition that allows the buyer to back out of the contract without penalty for a certain limited period of time during escrow. Another way to think of the role of a contingency is that the buyer submits an offer to buy the property contingent upon certain conditions being met. If those conditions are not met, then the buyer can cancel the contract. In a typical real estate contract in California, a buyer will submit an offer to purchase real property contingent upon the property appraising at the contract price, the buyer obtaining a loan from a commercial bank at a certain

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Posted in Contingencies, Contract/ Agreement Revision, Purchase and Sale, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

What is a Lis Pendens?

  Lis pendens is latin for “suit pending”.   It is also often referred to as a Notice of Pendency of Action.   It is a notice recorded with the County Recorder’s Office in the county where the property is located that puts the world on notice, through its recording, that there is a lawsuit currently pending that concerns title or possession to the real property. When properly recorded, a lis pendens imparts constructive notice to subsequent purchasers, transferees and encumbrancers that an action is pending which affects the real property described in the notice.  California Code of Civil Procedure Section 405.24.  We typically see lis pendens recorded in several types of cases, including:  quiet title, specific performance, easement cases, partition, adverse possession, wrongful eviction

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Posted in Lien On Property, Lis Pendens, Litigation, Partition, Purchase and Sale, Quiet Title, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles, Specific Performance

2 Tips To Get Ready to Sell Your Home

1.  Prepare Yourself Mentally that the Property May Take Longer to Sell Than You Anticipate Savvy sellers know that getting a buyer to stick (close escrow) is not as easy as it would seem. Many real estate sales fail to close escrow because the buyer fails to complete the purchase for reasons beyond the control of the seller. This can be mentally exhausting – so prepare yourself for an unpredictable ride. The property will sell, it just may not sell within your desired time frame and that can complicate plans to move, a purchase of another residence or other personal obligations that may be motivating the seller’s decision to sell. We recommend preparing yourself for the slight uncertainty by not putting extra pressure on yourself to sell within a certain timeframe or to a certain seller – understand

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Posted in Contracts/ Agreements, Purchase and Sale, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

California Unlawful Detainers – Step by Step Overview

At Schorr Law, understanding and being proficient in the unlawful detainer process is a neccessary part of our practice.  In fact, although many of our cases involve issues of disputed title, partition, wrongful foreclosure, quiet title and even easements, often times one party tries to exert pressure on the other party through the use of an unlawful detainer action.  This is true because unlawful detainer actions are summary proceedings that are resolved on an expedited basis. At Schorr Law, our real estate attorneys also represent commercial landlords and tenants in unlawful detainer proceedings.  On a commercial level, the stakes can be quite high. Often times we are charged with evicting or defending businesses that have been in place for years, if not decades.  No matter how

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Posted in Arbitration, Commercial Lease, Commercial Lease Disputes, Commercial Lease Unlawful Detainer, Commercial Real Estate, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

5 Things to Consider With Neighbor Lot Line Disputes

What is a neighbor dispute or a lot line dispute?   Typically it is a dispute amongst adjacent owners of real estate concerning their boundary lines and whether either party has developed the right to extend beyond their legal property lines.  In this post, our Los Angeles based real estate attorneys discuss 5 things to consider whenever you are dealing with a lot line, boundary or neighbor dispute. 1.  Is there a survey?  All boundary disputes should start with a survey.  After all, how can either neighbor argue that the other neighbor is exceeding their legal boundary lines without a marker and a licensed survey.  We always recommend getting a survey first. 2.   Use.   This is a key question.  In particular, if one

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Posted in Easement, Equitable Easement, Lot Line Disputes, Prescriptive Easement, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

Are Sellers Required to Disclose That Their Property May be Haunted?

Are Sellers required to disclose that their property is haunted?  With Halloween approaching we have seen a lot of requests from the national media about whether sellers and agents have to disclose if a house is haunted.  This is a fun topic and gives us an opportunity to talk about disclosure obligations.   Moreover, it allows us to focus on the burden of proof. The closest area of the law we can draw upon for this topic is the seller’s obligation to disclose a death on the property if it occurred within three years prior to the sale.  Specifically, under California Civil Code section 1710.2 (a), a seller of real property is only required to disclose of an occupant’s death if the death occurred in the

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Posted in Non-Disclosure, Purchase and Sale, Real Estate Attorney Los Angeles

Analysis: Anti-Slapp Motions in Landlord Tenant Context

  C.C.P. section 425.16 allows for a special motion to strike “a cause of action against a person arising from any act of that person in furtherance of the person’s right of petition or free speech under the United States Constitution or the California Constitution in connection with a public issue.” (C.C.P. § 425.16, subd. (b)(1).) The court determines the merits of a SLAPP motion by undertaking a two-step analysis. First, the court decides whether the plaintiff’s cause of action arises from defendant’s protected activity. If the defendant fails to meet this threshold requirement, the SLAPP motion must be denied. If the trial court finds such a showing has been made, it must then determine whether the plaintiff demonstrated a probability of prevailing on the

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Posted in Anti- SLAPP, Commercial Real Estate, Leases, Litigation, Notice to Quit

Purchase Disputes and the Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing

Every contract contains an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. The basic premise is that the party entering into the contract will not do anything that will negatively affect the other party’s contractual rights. Stated differently, the law requires the parties to do all things reasonably contemplated by the terms of the contract to help accomplish its purpose. In the real estate litigation context, we most often see claims involving a breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing with purchase and sale disputes. These disputes arise most commonly in the specific performance context where a buyer is alleging that the seller prevented performance and in escrow deposit disputes where a seller is contending that the buyer somehow failed to

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Posted in Purchase and Sale

Mechanic’s Lien Recording Timeframe

Picerne Constr. Corp. v. Castellino Villas  In general, Cal. Civ. Code §8412 provides that for a contractor to preserve the right to enforce a mechanic’s lien he must record his claim of lien after he completes his contract and before the expiration of either: (a) Ninety days after completion of the work of improvement; or (b) Sixty days after the owner records a notice of completion or cessation. (See Cal. Civ. Code §8412.) Thus, under California’s mechanic’s lien laws, without a recorded notice of completion a general contractor has 90 days from completion of the work of improvement to record a claim of mechanic’s lien.  (Cal. Civ. Code §8412(a).) Prior to the ruling in Picerne Constr. Corp v. Castellino Villas, courts differed in opinion as to

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Posted in Mechanics Lien

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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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