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Koontz: A Valuable Weapon Against Government Sponsored Extortion

The U.S. Supreme Court decided a case which bolsters the rights of property owners against government agencies who impose “extortionate” demands or development fees. The opinion was issued on June 25, 2013 in the case of Koontz v. St. Johns River… Read More
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Boundaries and Encroachments – A Lesson in Sharing – Part 2

What Does Sharing Have to Do With Encroachments and Boundaries? Sometimes our selfish nature gets the better of us and we fight over things that should be shared. Boundary and encroachment disputes can often be resolved by better understanding how to… Read More
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Easements – A Lesson in Sharing – Part 1

What Does Sharing Have to Do With Easements? Sometimes, our selfish nature gets the better of us and we fight over things that should be shared. Easement disputes can often be solved by a better understanding of how conflicting uses should be shared.… Read More
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California Usury Exemption for Real Estate Brokers

The California constitution protects its citizens from usury, which is the lending of money at excessively high interest rates. Although the California Constitution generally allows for a lender to contract with a borrower for a loan primarily for pe… Read More
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Tax Exempt Organization? Watch Out for Adverse Possession

Adverse possession is often cited as a very narrow remedy in California due to the challenges in showing payment of property taxes. While California has a very short five year time period to acquire property by adverse possession, it famously require… Read More
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Interpretation of “Best Efforts” Clauses in Real Estate Contracts

What standard of care or contractual duty should be applied in order for a party to fulfill a “best efforts” requirement in a contract? This question is a frequently litigated topic in contract dispute cases, including real estate contracts, as..… Read More
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Valuation of an Easement – Appreciation in Value of the Servient Tenement

The recent decision in SCI California Funeral Services, Inc. v. Five Bridges Foundation (2012) 203 Cal.App.4th 549, confirms a new valuation approach for determining damages in the termination of an appurtenant easement. In this case, SCI California… Read More
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Its Your Obligation to Defend Against Prescriptive Easements

The recent decision in Connolly v. Trabue (2012) 204 Cal.App.4th 1154, confirms that a property owner must be proactive to take affirmative steps if they want to prevent a prescriptive easement from being established over their property. A frequent t… Read More
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The Doctrine of Agreed Boundaries Requires an Actual Agreement

The agreed boundary doctrine is very often considered as one of the most straight forward legal doctrines. Essentially, if neighboring property owners agree on the boundary between their respective properties, that boundary becomes the property line,… Read More
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