Frequently Asked Questions
Provided by a San Diego Real Estate & Business Attorney
As a buyer in a real estate transaction, why would I need an attorney?
In California, real estate purchases are generally handled by real estate agents and brokers. Most of these individuals give relatively good advice and guidance. However, if something goes awry during the transaction or afterwards, your interests will be best represented by a competent real estate attorney who knows real estate law relative to such matters as purchase agreements, title defects, liens, and encumbrances, unfulfilled contingencies, or the failure to disclose defects. In order to avoid these difficult hurdles, you may wish to have a real estate lawyer oversee your transaction before the deal closes.
In a business dispute, why should I bother with mediation or arbitration first?
Generally, in a business dispute, you will want to achieve the most cost effective and efficient solution to the conflict as possible. Often these matters can be resolved outside of court through mediation methods which can produce negotiated settlements or agreements in which both sides maintain control over the matter. This is a less costly, less stressful, and less time-consuming process. When a judge or jury decides the outcome of your dispute, you are at the mercy of the judge or jury despite having a strong case and a talented attorney on your side. When you and the other party resolve the matter privately, you may come up with much more practical and satisfying results.
What is a "title defect?"
Anything that is wrong with a property's title or any problem which clouds the title. Such problems can include a lien, an encumbrance, an easement, an error in the legal description of the property, or any legal right or competing interest of another person or an entity with an interest in the property, such as an unknown heir. A title defect can affect the marketability of the property.
What is the difference between mediation and arbitration in a business dispute?
Mediation is a voluntary, cooperative process in which the disputing parties work to resolve their differences through a negotiated settlement with the help of a neutral third party (the mediator). This settlement, however, is not legally binding. If the parties are not fully satisfied, they may then pursue litigation through the courts.
Arbitration is a procedure in which a dispute is submitted, by agreement of the parties, to one or more arbitrators who make a binding decision on the dispute. In choosing arbitration, the parties opt for a private dispute resolution procedure instead of going to court. Unlike going to court, both mediation and arbitration are usually confidential.
What is the most common type of real estate litigation?
Without a doubt, breach of contract is the most common cause of action in a real estate lawsuit. Contracts are often created when two parties have a written or oral agreement that governs their business dealings together. This contact can include agreements regarding a purchase and sale, a lease, a partnership agreement, and any other agreement between one or more parties. When one side of the party fails to fulfill their side of the contract, a breach of contract has been committed. In order to recover any damages you may have suffered from breach of contract, you must establish that you performed your end of the contract but that the defendant did not.
What is a partition?
A partition is filed by co-owners of property and does not necessarily mean that one of the parties did something wrong. Instead, partitions allow for co-owners of a property to disengage from each other by selling the property or a buy-out. If the parties are unable to reach an agreement regarding the sale or buy-out of the property, then the court can order for the property to be sold and the proceeds to be equally divided.
What are some common examples of bad faith?
Bad faith conduct happens when you purchase an insurance policy of any kind and the insurance company does not fulfill their end of the deal. This can include actions such as unreasonable denial or termination of an insurance claim that should have been paid, unreasonably attempting to under-settle or lowball the payment of a valid claim, or unreasonable delay in making payments to a policyholder. It is important to secure the help of a legal professional if you have been the victim of bad faith, as these insurance companies are backed by attorneys and other resources that can make winning a lawsuit challenging.
Where does the statute of limitations come into play?
This is a time limit that is placed upon a business looking to take out a legal claim. It requires that they take out a claim within a certain frame of time, otherwise their case will be viewed as invalid. It is important that you are informed in these matters and have representation from someone who recognizes these timelines and will ensure adherence to them. A business litigation matter can be time consuming and costly and you do not want to take your chances. Failing to take initiative can leave you unable to pursue action in a case and this can harm you and your business in the end.
How long will a business litigation case take to resolve.
There is no across the board time limit that can be given for all cases, which is why it is important to get in contact with a lawyer from our firm. By speaking with us directly we can review your case and give a more accurate frame of reference for how long related matters typically take.
What can be done in a boundary dispute?
When two individuals are fighting over the line of property, there are a number of steps that can be taken in order to determine who has a valid claim to the land. One of these includes looking up the legal records of the original line. Sometime this line has been changed by owners throughout the years and the land was no longer used by the original owner, but by the other person. In some scenarios it may be possible for the land ownership to be switched over. An attorney from our office will recognize the different avenues that are available to seek results.