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Real Estate Law Archives

Options to pursue in dealing with encroachment

You have an expansive piece of land and someone decides to erect a structure on it either purposefully or because they didn't do proper surveying to get the property boundaries just right. What's described above is encroachment. It's one of the more common reasons real estate disputes get underway.

What residential landlords should know about Utah's eviction process - II

As we discussed in a previous post, those investors who put their money in rental property in the wake of the recession are now grateful for their bold move, as the rebounding real estate market and resurgent economy have allowed them to realize a handsome profit.

What residential landlords should know about Utah's eviction process

Thanks to a rebounding real estate market and a resurgent economy, there is perhaps no better time than the present for those considering an investment in residential rental property to take the plunge. Indeed, many investors have already done so, seeing their rental units occupied quickly and realizing a handsome profit.

Prescriptive Rights Presumed if Use Over Twenty Years

To establish a prescriptive easement, a person must show, "by clear and convincing evidence," Buckley v. Cox, 247 P.2d 277, 279-80 (Utah 1952), that his "use of another's land was open, continuous, and adverse under a claim of right for a period of twenty years." Valcarce v. Fitzgerald, 961 P.2d 305, 311 (Utah 1998); see also Orton v. Carter, 970 P.2d 1254, 1258 (Utah 1998). However, "once a claimant has shown an open and continuous use of the land under claim of right for the twenty-year prescriptive period, the use will be presumed to have been adverse." Id. The burden then shifts to the property owner who opposes the easement to "establish[] that the use was initially permissive." Id. at 311-12. Each of the elements of prescriptive easement must be proven by clear and convincing evidence. Lunt v. Lance, 2008 UT App 192, ¶ 18, 186 P.3d 978.

Issues with titles can become serious legal headaches

When you own land or a home, you will obviously be very familiar with the term "title." A title is a legal right of ownership for a particular piece of property. Title can be referred to in many different contexts, but you really only hear the terms used in relation to cars and real estate. Having a title is very valuable, giving you the right to do what you want with a piece of property.

Commercial lease particulars: multifaceted considerations

No successful business entity in Utah or anywhere else across the United States would consider involvement in a transaction of any complexity without having solid legal acumen at hand to identify and gauge risk, as well as to mitigate it to the fullest extent possible.

RESTRICTIVE COVENANTS AS SIMPLE CONTRACTS

The Utah Supreme Court strengthened the power of an owner's association and a homeowner's association governing board to enforce the restrictive covenants against individual lot owners. In Fort Pierce Industrial Park Phases II, III & IV Owners Association v. Shakespeare, 2016 UT 28, the Utah Supreme Court rejected the notion that "restrictive covenants are not favored in the law and are strictly construed in favor of the free and unrestricted use of property." St. Benedict's Development Co. v. St. Benedict's Hospital, 811 P.2d 194 (Utah 1991). While not exactly overruling St. Benedict, the Utah Supreme Court made clear that in construing restrictive covenants, "the rules of construction used for contracts" applies. Fort Pierce, 2016 UT 28, ¶¶ 8, 32. As demonstrated in Fort Pierce, that puts the governing board on equal footing with the homeowner or lot owner in interpreting what the restrictive covenants mean. Further, the court held that decisions of the governing board are afforded a "presumption of reasonableness." Id. ¶ 28. That means the lot or homeowner has the burden of overcoming that presumption before a decision of the governing board is overturned. After the Fort Pierce case, the governing board's ability to enforce the restrictive covenants and its decisions in interpreting them are markedly strengthened.

What to know before engaging in a landlord-tenant dispute

Whether you are a tenant or a landlord, there will likely come a time where you don't agree with the other party. Maybe you feel like your landlord doesn't take your concerns seriously enough. Maybe you know that your tenant is disruptive and that other tenants have made complaints about him or her. No matter which side you are on, the resulting dispute could become a huge problem if you let it get to that point.

If you are dealing with a real estate dispute, get legal help

When you hear the phrase "real estate dispute," you probably think about an individual person who has rented an apartment and who is actively disputing something about the terms of the lease with the landlord of the property. To be fair, this is a common dispute relating to real estate. However, there are also circumstances where a real estate dispute relates to a company renting a space and the property owner or manager of that space.