Articles Tagged with legal declarations

Underwood-Blog-Images-1-3-300x300Writs of possession are special statutory remedies that usually appear in unlawful detainer actions. As their name implies, they are a means of recovering possession from someone who is wrongfully occupying a property. Writs are unique, however, in that they are almost exclusively a post-judgment tool.

This means that there must be a court judgment, order, or decree already in place that entitles a party to possession of the property. Only then can said party apply for and obtain a writ, allowing them to kick the wrongful occupants out of the house.

At Underwood Law Firm, our attorneys are familiar with writs of possession and the inherent difficulties in obtaining them. When a property is on the line, we understand what needs to be done and are prepared to assist you in achieving your litigation goals, whatever they may be.

Underwood-Blog-Images-2-300x300No. In California, individuals often hide behind “corporations” that consist of a single shareholder. In so doing, they protect themselves from liability by utilizing a corporate form. This can be especially frustrating in lawsuits.

Often, a plaintiff will receive a judgment in their favor, only to find the corporation they’ve sued has magically become bankrupt, unable to satisfy their debts. California law provides a remedy for this instance, called “piercing the veil.”

But sometimes, the situation is reversed, and an individual cannot satisfy their debts. In some states, courts allow creditors to reverse pierce the veil and seize the corporate assets owned by the individual shareholder. California does not allow this, as the courts see it as a hasty and inadequate solution for which other remedies already exist.

Underwood-Blog-Images-300x300A “quiet title” action is a lawsuit where a property owner seeks to eliminate, establish, resolve, and “quiet” any other claims on the same property by anyone else. Once complete, the lawsuit will result in a perfect title enforceable in the courts. A quiet title action is thus an effective tool to establish and settle ownership over real estate.

Quiet title judgments are particularly powerful, however, and therefore involve more stringent requirements than other lawsuits in the real estate field. At Underwood Law, our attorneys are familiar with handling the complexities of quiet title actions and are here to help navigate you through this unique lawsuit.

What does a Quiet Title Action do?

Underwood-Blog-Images-1-300x300A lis pendens – also called a notice of pendency of action – is a special type of legal document filed with a county recorder. Though its use is limited to lawsuits involving real property claims, its effect is powerful. Once recorded, it acts as “constructive notice” to all persons who would subsequently acquire an interest in the property at issue that a lawsuit is occurring.

In this way, a lis pendens protects title holders as they proceed through litigation and, more importantly, the appeals process. The attorneys at Underwood Law Firm have filed countless lis pendens notices and are more than familiar enough with their requirements to assist you in your real estate litigation.

When can you file a lis pendens?

Underwood-Blog-Images-1-2-300x300A pre-condemnation offer is a formal offer based on an appraisal that the government needs to offer a property owner prior to filing a condemnation claim in court. Condemnation is the special word given to eminent domain actions and should not be confused with the condemnation that is associated with those actions taken by the government against properties that pose health risks and other hazards to the public.

The pre-condemnation offer is incredibly important, and the government’s failure to comply with the strict statutory guidelines in place can result in massive expenses during a condemnation hearing. The Underwood Law Firm is familiar with Eminent Domain disputes over property values and is more than capable of assisting you from the appraisal phase to a condemnation trial.

What is Eminent Domain?

Underwood-Blog-Images-3-300x300Sometimes, two or more persons claim to have an interest in the same piece of property. If these interests conflict, then the courts have to step in to adjudicate the dispute and decide whose title is true. But things can get messy when both parties appear to have valid deeds, free or forgery, or other impropriety.

It is for this reason that California (and most other states) enacted laws called “race-notice” statutes. As will be discussed below, these statutes are designed to give “priority” to competing property interests, making it much easier to settle disputes over the same piece of land.

Of course, there are many exceptions to the general rule that the first to record their interest gets the highest priority. Bona fide purchasers, for instance, are entitled to special benefits if they lack knowledge of competing claims. Underwood Law firm is more than familiar with real estate recording laws and has the experience and knowledge to assist you in these types of title disputes.

Underwood-Blog-Images-1-3-300x300Yes. While joint ventures are a distinct type of business entity, they share many similarities with general partnerships in California. In fact, “the resemblance between a partnership and joint venture is so close that the rights as between adventurers are governed by practically the same rules that govern partners.” (Milton Kauffman, Inc. v. Superior Court (1949) 94 Cal.App.2d 8, 17.) That being said, there are some differences between the two. This post will address those differences and discuss the common issues that arise among them.  

What is a joint venture?

Under California law, a joint venture “exists where there is an agreement between the parties under which they have a community of interest, that is, a joint interest, in a common business undertaking…” (County of Riverside v. Loma Linda Univ. (1981) 118 Cal.App.3d 300, 313.) In essence, “a joint venture is an undertaking by two or more persons to carry out a single business enterprise for profit.” (Unruh-Haxton v. Regents of University of California (2008) 162 Cal.App.4th 343, 370.)

Underwood-Blog-Images-2-1-300x300While litigation guarantees are recommended in a lot of contested real estate issues in court, it is not required in a partition action. Read on to find out more about the nuances of litigation guarantees and their relationship with partition actions. 

What is a partition action? 

A partition action or a partition lawsuit is when one co-owner, or when one person with an interest in the property wants to sell the property, but the other co-owners or others with an interest in the property do not want to sell their ownership rights. 

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