Justia Real Estate & Property Law Opinion Summaries

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Norma Peinhardt and Larry Todd, who sought to sell real property and a divide of the sale proceeds, appealed a trial court's grant of summary judgment entered against them and in favor of Louise Peinhardt and Amelia Peinhardt. The property at issue was originally owned by Louis Peinhardt, who died in 1964. Louis had three children by his first wife Emma: Amelia, Herman ("Louis Jr.") and Louise; Louis had one daughter by his second wife, Marie: Linda Chambers. In 1965, Marie, Linda, and Linda's husband Leon executed a deed granting title to real property to Louis Jr., Amelia, and Louise. In 2006, Louis Jr. filed a complaint seeking a sale for division of the property. For reasons that not entirely clear from the record, the case remained idle at the circuit court for several years. However, on June 22, 2016, Louis Jr. executed a warranty deed in which he purported to convey his interest in the subject property to his wife, Norma Peinhardt ("Norma"), and his stepson, Larry Todd ("Larry"), "as joint tenants with a right of survivorship." In 2020, Amelia and Louise filed a summary-judgment motion in which they contended that a survivorship provision was part of the 1965 deed, and therefore Louis Jr.'s conveyance of his interest in the property to Norma and Larry was a nullity because Amelia and Louise had not granted consent to the conveyance. The Alabama Supreme Court determined the 1965 deed conveyed a joint tenancy in the portion of the subject property at issue rather than a tenancy in common with a right of survivorship. As a result, Louis Jr.'s conveyance of his interest in the portion of the subject property at issue was permissible. Accordingly, the circuit court's grant of summary judgment was issued in error. The matter was remanded for further proceedings. View "Peinhardt v. Peinhardt" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court reversed the order of the district court dismissing Appellant's complaint under Nev. Rev. Stat. 38.310, holding that the district court erred.Appellant purchased property at a homeowners' association (HOA) foreclosure sale following the previous owner's default on HOA assessments imposed by covenants, conditions, or restrictions (CC&Rs). Because the first deed of trust on the property survived the foreclosure sale, Appellant sued the HOA and its agent, alleging breach of the duty of good faith, misrepresentation, conspiracy, and violation of Nev. REv. Stat. Chapter 113. The district court dismissed the complaint on the ground that Appellant had not engaged in alternative dispute resolution before bringing this suit in violation of section 38.310. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) section 38.310 did not apply to Appellant's claims; and (2) therefore, the district court erred in dismissing the complaint. View "Saticoy Bay, LLC v. Peccole Ranch Community Ass'n" on Justia Law

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Three appeals arose from an insurance coverage dispute following a wildfire that burned in Siskiyou County, California. In September 2014, the Boles Fire damaged and destroyed numerous homes in the town of Weed, including the homes owned by plaintiffs Gary Andrighetto, James Dalin, and Matthew Vulk. Plaintiffs and others filed suit against their insurance company, defendant State Farm General Insurance Company, alleging various claims, including breach of contract and negligence. Central to the parties’ dispute was whether State Farm intentionally or negligently underinsured plaintiffs’ homes. Plaintiffs argued their homes were insufficiently insured due to State Farm’s alleged failure to calculate reasonable or adequate policy limits on their behalf for the full replacement cost of their homes. After the trial court granted State Farm’s motion for summary judgment against Andrighetto, Dalin and Vulk stipulated to entry of judgment in favor of State Farm. Each plaintiff timely appealed, and the Court of Appeal consolidated the appeals for argument and disposition. Thereafter, the Court requested that the parties discuss in their briefing whether the judgments in the Dalin and Vulk matters needed to be reversed pursuant to Magana Cathcart McCarthy v. CB Richard Ellis, Inc., 174 Cal.App.4th 106 (2009). After review, the Court affirmed the trial court in the Andrighetto matter; the Court reversed in the Dalin and Vulk matters, and remanded those for further proceedings. View "Vulk v. State Farm General Ins. Co." on Justia Law

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Golf Village owns, maintains, and administers a 900-acre planned community in Powell, including one of 11 separate lots in a commercial development. A 2003 “Declaration of Private Roads” refers to the use of private roads by each commercial lot owner, its employees, customers, and invitees. In 2010, one lot was transferred to the city for a municipal park. In 2018, the City began using three streets without Golf Village’s permission, removed a curb, and built a construction entrance. Golf Village sued (42 U.S.C. 1983), claiming that Powell has taken its property without just compensation or due process.The Sixth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of the suit. Golf Village did not establish the loss of its right to exclude; it could terminate the alleged taking by building a gate at the private street's entrance to ensure that everyone who drives on those streets is an invited guest. Under Golf Village’s analysis, any time the government took an action that made a property owner’s property more popular, regardless of what actions the property owner could take, there would be a taking. Any increased traffic, which may lead to additional maintenance costs, is merely a government action outside the owner’s property that causes consequential damages within. There are no material allegations that Golf Village cannot use and enjoy the private roads to the extent that it did before the City’s actions. View "Golf Village North, LLC v. City of Powell" on Justia Law

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In 2014, Seven Hills LLC began developing a cannabis production and processing business in Chelan County, Washington. After Seven Hills procured the relevant permits and began building on its property, Chelan County (County) passed Resolution 2015-94, which placed a moratorium on siting new cannabis-related businesses. While the moratorium was in place, Seven Hills received the necessary state licenses and began operating its cannabis production and processing business. Shortly thereafter, the County passed Resolution 2016-14, which changed the relevant ordinances resulting in the barring of new cannabis-related businesses. Seven Hills received a notice and order to abate zoning from the County Department of Community Development, containing four allegations: that Seven Hills had (1) produced and processed cannabis in violation of Resolution 2016-14; (2) constructed and operated unpermitted structures; (3) operated unpermitted propane tanks; and (4) created a public nuisance. A hearing examiner found Seven Hills committed all four violations; the trial court and the Court of Appeals affirmed. The Washington Supreme Court held the County’s resolution declaring a moratorium on siting new cannabis production and processing activities did not amend or replace existing zoning ordinances, and that Seven Hills established a nonconforming use prior to adoption of Resolution 2016-14. Further, the Court held that Resolution 2016-14 did amend the County’s ordinances defining agricultural use, but did not retroactively extinguish vested rights. Accordingly, the Court of Appeals was reversed in part and the matter remanded for further proceedings. View "Seven Hills, LLC v. Chelan County" on Justia Law

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The School Board sought equitable relief from Crest Hill ordinances creating a real property tax increment financing (TIF) district and attendant redevelopment plan and project, pursuant to the Tax Increment Allocation Redevelopment Act (65 ILCS 5/11-74.4-1). The Board complained that Crest Hill violated the TIF Act by including parcels of realty in the redevelopment project area that were not contiguous. An excluded parcel is owned by the utility company, is located outside the incorporated boundaries of the municipality and the boundaries of the redevelopment project area, and physically separates the parcels the municipality found to be contiguous for purposes of including them in the redevelopment project area.The circuit court granted Crest Hill summary judgment. The Appellate Court reversed. The Illinois Supreme Court affirmed the reversal. A public-utility-right-of-way exception to the contiguity requirement for annexation, found in the Municipal Code (65 ILCS 5/7-1-1), does not apply as an exception to contiguity required by the TIF Act. This case does not involve contiguous properties running parallel and adjacent to each other in a reasonably substantial physical sense, wherein a public utility owns a right-of-way, or easement, to pass through one or both of the physically adjacent properties. View "Board of Education of Richland School District No. 88A v. City of Crest Hill" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court denied as moot the writ of mandamus sought by Malcolm and Mary Wood seeking to compel Rocky River Board of Zoning and Building Appeals and its members (collectively, the zoning board) to stay their approval of a development plan and hear their appeals, holding that subsequent events had rendered the case moot.After the planning commission approved a proposed real estate development in Rocky River the Woods, who lived next to the site, filed an appeal. The zoning board declared the notice of appeal void on the grounds that the appeal was not completed or perfected within a timely fashion. The Woods subsequently filed a complaint for a writ of mandamus. The Supreme Court denied the writ of mandamus as moot because the construction of the project was substantially underway. View "State ex rel. Wood v. Rocky River" on Justia Law

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A Monterey pine tree grows in the Prices’s backyard and obstructs Kahn’s views of the San Francisco Bay and Marin County from the main level of her residence. Kahn sought relief under the San Francisco Tree Dispute Resolution Ordinance, which creates “rights in favor of private property owners” to restore their “views lost due to tree growth” on adjoining property.The court entered judgment in favor of Kahn, directing the tree’s removal, and granting Kahn’s request for Code of Civil Procedure section 128.5 sanctions of $47,345.30, payable by the Prices and their trial counsel Weisberg. The court of appeal affirmed, rejecting arguments that the lawsuit was barred by the statute of limitations, that dismissal was required for Kahn’s failure to comply with the Ordinance’s prelitigation procedures, and that the trial court erred in directing the tree’s removal. The court also upheld the award of sanctions. The lawsuit “meets the crucial test” for an action to abate a continuing nuisance for which any statute of limitations is inapplicable. The court was not required to dismiss the action predicated on Kahn’s failure to include in her prelitigation tree claim visual images of unobstructed views from the main level of her residence before the growth of the tree. View "Kahn v. Price" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the district court upholding the Broadwater Conservation District's (BCD) declaratory ruling determining that Montana Gulch is a "stream" subject to the regulatory provisions of The Natural Streambed and Land Preservation Act of 1975, Mont. Code Ann. 75-7-103, holding that there was no error.Specifically, the Supreme Court held (1) the BCD and the district court did not err in determining that Montana Gulch could be classified as a "natural, perennial-flowing stream" under the jurisdiction of the Streambed Act upon a finding that it would have flowed perennially without human activity; (2) the BCD properly examined historical evidence when determining whether Montana Gulch would have flowed perennially in the absence of human activity; (3) the BCD's determination that Montana Gulch was under the Streambed Act's jurisdiction was not arbitrary and capricious; and (4) the BCD and the district court did not err in considering subsurface flows in Montana Gulch. View "Fortner v. Broadwater Conservation District" on Justia Law

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Joliet condemned a housing complex managed by New West and paid $15 million. HUD rent subsidies for low-income tenants provided almost all of the money for operating the development. A $2.7 million fund had been established by New West and HUD, to cover necessary maintenance and repairs in the event of a default by New West. HUD refused to release that account to New West, contending that it now holds the account to cover Joliet’s obligations.The Seventh Circuit affirmed the summary judgment rejection of New West’s suit to recover the account. New West cannot establish conversion of the fund without first establishing ownership. HUD’s lien on the fund does not establish ownership of the fund and New West has not established its ownership by showing that it treated deposits into the fund as taxable income. View "New West, L.P. v. Fudge" on Justia Law