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|The Economic Loss Doctrine Scaled Back in Massachusetts|
Asha Echeverria; Bernstein Shur;
July 22, 2014, previously published on July 18, 2014In a case recently decided by the Massachusetts Supreme Court, the Court reaffirmed that the Economic Loss Rule applies to construction cases in Massachusetts. The trustees of the Market Gallery Condominiums in Lowell filed an action against Ayer Properties seeking damages for the negligent...
|Deposit in Commercial Real Estate Transaction Can Be Retained as Liquidated Damages Sum Even If Property Sold For More Than Original Contract Price|
Jonathan F. Claussen; Berger Singerman LLP;
July 21, 2014, previously published on July 17, 2014The Third District Court of Appeal recently ruled that a sum provided as a deposit in a commercial real estate contract could be retained as a liquidated damages amount when the buyer did not close on the transaction, even though the amount was argued to be an excessive penalty and the property was...
|California Supreme Court Holds Design Professionals Owe a Duty of Care to Future Homeowners|
John R. Clifford, Edward P. Garson, Ian A. Stewart; Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker LLP;
July 18, 2014, previously published on July 11, 2014 The California Supreme Court in Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP (July 3, 2014), held - based on common law principles - that an architect owes a “duty of care” to future homeowners in the design of a residential building. (July 3, 2014), held...
|"Just the Facts" Virginia Common Interest Communities 2014 Legislative Changes|
Kevin A. Kernan; Whiteford, Taylor & Preston L.L.P.;
July 17, 2014, previously published on July 3, 2014 As a result of the 2014 General Assembly Session, a number of bills were approved by the General Assembly and signed by the Governor, many of which directly or indirectly impact common interest communities in Virginia.
|Pa. Superior Court Confirms Statutory Right of Repose for Improvements to Real Estate in Asbestos Cases|
Duane Morris LLP;
July 16, 2014, previously published on July 8, 2014The Pennsylvania Superior Court reversed a jury verdict in favor of plaintiffs in an asbestos mesothelioma case, finding that the 12-year statute of repose bars all claims related to improvements constructed on real estate brought beyond the statutory period pursuant to 42 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann....
|Owning Real Property as Tenants in Common|
Kohrman Jackson Krantz PLL;
July 16, 2014, previously published on July 14, 2014Owners of commercial property have increasing found benefit in owning their separate interests in the property as “tenants in common.” Typically, if two or more parties wanted to jointly own a commercial property, the typical approach would be to form a limited liability company (LLC)...
|Hong Kong Owner Successfully Appeals Against Conviction under the Air Pollution Control Ordinance|
Geoffrey Y. M. Chan, Mei Ling Lew; Mayer Brown JSM;
July 14, 2014, previously published on July 10, 2014In the recent case of HKSAR v. Wing Lok Construction & Engineering Co., Ltd.  2 HKLRD 669, the Court of First Instance allowed an appeal against the conviction of an owner of premises under s.77(2) of the Air Pollution Control Ordinance, Cap. 311 (APCO) for, when carrying out or causing...
|Property Rights and Fracking - Who Owns Your Land?|
Withers Bergman LLP/Withers LLP;
July 14, 2014, previously published on June 30, 2014It has been predicted by Amec (an oil industry consultant) that the full exploitation in the UK of oil and gas reserves trapped in shale rock formations (a process known as ‘fracking’) will be capable of producing more than twice the 100 billion cubic metres of gas consumed annually in...
|Purchasers’ Liens Remain an Uncommon Remedy|
Vanessa Lunday; McCarthy Tétrault LLP;
July 14, 2014, previously published on July 8, 2014Earlier this year, we discussed the decision of the BC Supreme Court in Pan Canadian Mortgage Group v. 679972 B.C. Ltd. in our publication Real Estate MATTERS. That decision was significant because it was a rare instance in which a BC court declared that a purchaser’s lien had been...
|VAT on Listed Buildings|
Withers Bergman LLP/Withers LLP;
July 14, 2014, previously published on June 30, 2014Listed building VAT relief for residential property was abolished in 2012. At Withers we have taken some soundings concerning any changes in the behaviour of residential property owners arising from the removal of VAT relief on approved alterations. We have asked whether this has caused more or...