Real Estate

  • October 22, 2014

    New Mortgage Rules Complicate Fannie, Freddie Endgame

    Recent moves by federal regulators to increase sales of mortgages to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could further dampen hopes for a resurgence of private capital in the U.S. housing market, and make it more difficult to wind Fannie and Freddie down, policymakers and experts said.

  • October 22, 2014

    FDIC, Citi Settle 9th Circ. Appeal Over Colonial Bank Failure

    Citigroup Global Markets Inc. has reached a settlement agreement with the FDIC in a Ninth Circuit appeal alleging a number of banks spurred on Colonial Bank's failure by selling it poor-quality mortgage-backed securities, and the bank insurer said Wednesday it expects Bank of America Corp. to exit the suit shortly as well.

  • October 22, 2014

    Variant Hearing Delayed After Ch. 11 Deal Draws Fire

    Bankrupt real estate company Variant Holding Co. LLC and creditor Beach Point Capital Management LP had their hopes dashed Wednesday for fast-track approval of a settlement that promised to streamline the case after an interested party's objection prompted a Delaware bankruptcy judge to postpone consideration of the deal.

  • October 22, 2014

    Schiff Hardin Snags Arent Fox Construction Group Head

    Schiff Hardin LLP earlier this week picked up a former leader of Arent Fox LLP’s construction practice, who will bring with him experience working on high-profile projects including New York’s Grand Central Station and Yankee Stadium, the firm said.

  • October 22, 2014

    Fannie, Freddie Escape Mass. AG's Foreclosure Suit

    A federal judge on Tuesday threw out the Massachusetts attorney general’s lawsuit accusing mortgage giants Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and their overseers at the Federal Housing Finance Agency of violating the state’s foreclosure prevention law, ruling that the state’s claims are beyond his jurisdiction.

  • October 22, 2014

    Credit Suisse Can't Duck $1B RMBS Suit, Appeals Court Says

    A New York appeals court on Tuesday rebuffed a Credit Suisse Group AG subsidiary’s bid to escape a residential mortgage-backed securities lawsuit that claims the bank failed to repurchase toxic loans that cost investors $1 billion, finding the case is not time-barred.

  • October 22, 2014

    Highland's RE Loan Suit Against Credit Suisse Gets Axed

    A New York judge on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit brought by affiliates of Highland Capital Management LP that claimed hundreds of millions of dollars in losses due to a Credit Suisse Group AG unit’s deceptive marketing of loans for resorts and high-end residential communities, including the troubled Yellowstone Mountain Club.

  • October 22, 2014

    Clarion, MRP Unit Scoop Up Pa. Industrial Project

    Property investment manager Clarion Partners LLC and the industrial arm of developer MRP Realty have snapped up the land and rights for a 1.5 million-square-foot, Class A industrial development project in Pennsylvania that recently scored a major tax break, the companies announced Wednesday.

  • October 22, 2014

    Ariz. Attacks Tribe's Phoenix Casino Plan In 9th Circ.

    The state of Arizona fired another volley in the Ninth Circuit seeking to halt a local Indian tribe's controversial plan to build a $400 million Las Vegas-style casino in Glendale, Arizona, saying the tribe failed to show that Congress intended to allow it to build a casino in an urban area far from its main reservation.

  • October 22, 2014

    Nonprofit Execs Indicted On Insurance Fraud, Bribery Charges

    The top two executives at a New York City substance abuse treatment nonprofit were indicted Wednesday over alleged insurance fraud and kickback schemes that prosecutors say lined the pockets of the father-and-son duo and allowed them to fuel a lavish lifestyle.

  • October 22, 2014

    PMG Nabs $124M Construction Loan For Miami High-Rise

    Property Markets Group has nabbed $123.6 million in construction financing from real estate investment firm Canyon Capital Realty Advisors LLC for luxury residential condominium tower Echo Brickell in Miami, the developer announced Wednesday.

  • October 22, 2014

    7 Tips For Closing Your Portfolio Property Deal

    When executing a major portfolio real estate deal, ensuring a smooth, hassle-free closing for the client can be the toughest task. Here are seven ways that attorneys from both the buyer and the seller sides can ensure a hitch-free negotiation and deal closing.

  • October 22, 2014

    National Union Defeats Suit Over $40M Real Estate Deal

    A Florida federal judge found for National Union Fire Insurance Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., on Tuesday in a suit by two insurers seeking coverage for a $40 million settlement in an underlying real estate dispute, ruling a directors and officers liability policy excludes negligence claims.

  • October 22, 2014

    Nomura Says FHFA Can't Back Up Timeline In MBS Suit

    Nomura Holding America Inc. told a New York federal court Tuesday that the Federal Housing Finance Agency can’t back up its contention that it was oblivious before 2008 that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were sold toxic residential mortgage-backed securities — a claim that would sink the bank's statute of limitations defense.

  • October 22, 2014

    Asian Investment In US Multifamily To Hit New Record

    The U.S. multifamily sector has seen a significant amount of new interest from Asian investors, who are set to inject a record amount of funds into the market this year, according to a report released Wednesday by CBRE.

  • October 22, 2014

    Amid $1B IPO, REIT Founder Accuses Ex-Partner Of Fraud

    The founder of a New York real estate investment trust gearing up to go public for $1 billion again sued his former business partner in New York federal court earlier this month for allegedly conspiring to ruin him through unauthorized access to the REIT's network, extortion and misrepresentation of the REIT to other parties.

  • October 22, 2014

    Insurers Won't Change $32M Deal Over Force-Placed Policies

    A trio of insurers on Tuesday rebuffed a Florida federal judge’s request that they sweeten a proposed $32 million settlement in a class action accusing them and HSBC Bank USA NA of overcharging homeowners for force-placed insurance, saying the current deal treats class members fairly.

  • October 22, 2014

    San Francisco Housing Ordinance Ruled Unconstitutional

    A California federal judge said Tuesday that a San Francisco ordinance requiring landlords to pay large sums of money to tenants prior to taking their properties off the market is unconstitutional, the latest in the city’s battle to combat its burgeoning housing unaffordability crisis.

  • October 22, 2014

    Palmolive Building Owners Dispute $33.4M Deduction Denial

    The owners of the historic Palmolive Building in Chicago have filed a protest over the Internal Revenue Service’s denial of a $33.4 million deduction for their donation of a conservation easement on the building, saying the agency had wrongly appraised the easement as valueless.

  • October 22, 2014

    SEC Narrowly OKs Risk-Retention Rules Amid Fiery Dissents

    A divided U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission passed final rules on Wednesday requiring firms to retain a stake in the asset-backed securities they issue, but not before two Republican members blasted the rule-making as a capitulation to banking regulators and a missed chance for meaningful reform.

Expert Analysis

  • Florida Decision Protects Lien Rights For Contractors

    Jason Kellogg

    A recent state appellate court decision reinforces the lien rights of Florida’s contractors, subcontractors and suppliers by limiting the ability of developers to employ creative means to avoid those liens — likely stabilizing the market for payment bonds and deterring increased litigation between contractors and their sureties, says Jason Kellogg of Levine Kellogg Lehman Schneider & Grossman LLP.

  • New Jurisdictional Issues When Moving To Quash A Subpoena

    Steven Luxton

    The Nevada federal court's recent ruling in Agincourt Gaming LLC v. Zynga Inc. is an important reminder that a nonparty wanting to challenge a civil subpoena should consider carefully the appropriate jurisdiction in which to file a motion to quash under recently enacted Rule 45, say Steven Luxton and Brad Nes of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP.

  • The Cayman Way Of Identifying, Enforcing Against Assets

    Christopher Russell

    Identifying Cayman Islands-held assets of a defendant or proposed defendant is something of a mixed bag — straightforward in some respects, but difficult, bordering on the impossible, in other respects, say Christopher Russell and Jane Hale-Smith of Appleby Global Group Services Ltd.

  • Texas Clears Path For Property Damage Calculations

    Bryan D. Rohm

    In Wheeler v. Enbridge Pipelines, the Texas Supreme Court provided guidance to midstream companies on the proper calculation of damages to real property stemming from the breach of a pipeline right-of-way agreement — a decision that has implications well beyond the oil and gas industry, say attorneys with K&L Gates LLP.

  • In Zoning Due Diligence, Creative Interpretation Is Key

    Frank E. Chaney

    It is a given that zoning should be a part of every developer’s due diligence. The question is, though, how much zoning analysis is enough and who should provide it, says Frank Chaney of Rosenberg & Estis PC.

  • What Litigators Can Learn From Novelists

    Michael H. Rubin

    Many legal briefs are written in impenetrable jargon and begin with an introduction telling the court what it already knows, using words that stem from the 18th century, such as “hereinafter.” Instead, we should approach briefs the way novelists approach their writing, says Michael Rubin of McGlinchey Stafford PLLC.

  • When Your General Contractor Files Bankruptcy

    Vicki R. Harding

    All is not lost when a general contractor files bankruptcy — subcontractors may be able to perfect their construction liens post-petition, as in the case of Branch Banking & Trust Co. v. Construction Supervision Services Inc., says Vicki Harding of Pepper Hamilton LLP.

  • Will The New ABS Rules Impact Cell Tower Securitizations?

    Malcolm P. Wattman

    Given the lack of specific discussion of cell tower securitizations in U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission commentary relating to two new rules affecting asset-backed securities, it is uncertain if cell tower securitizations are subject to the new rules, and whether the applicability of the rules depends upon the securitization structure used, say attorneys with Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft LLP.

  • Calif. Case Opens Door To Property Transfer Tax Rise

    Thomas S. Wisialowski

    A significant number of transactions that we normally would not have expected to trigger real property documentary transfer tax in most California cities and counties may now do so thanks to a ruling in 926 North Ardmore Avenue LLC v. County of Los Angeles, say Thomas Wisialowski and Sarah-Jane Hornbeek of Paul Hastings LLP.

  • Information Governance: A Missed Opportunity For Lawyers

    Ann Snyder

    Today, information intersects every practice area, making all lawyers effectively information governance practitioners in one way or another. The issue is whether you will consciously embrace this emerging discipline — and capitalize on it to the benefit of your clients and your practice, says Ann Snyder of the Information Governance Initiative.