Real Estate Litigation

Cozen O’Connor’s real estate attorneys act as counsel to developers, owners, real estate investment trusts, investors, retail and office tenants, real estate brokers and managers, banks and other lending institutions, title insurance companies, architects, and building contractors. Our team handles all types of real estate litigation involving failed loan workouts, landlord-tenant disputes, commercial evictions, rent resets, valuations, mortgage foreclosures, partnership and joint venture disputes, real estate tax appeals, condemnations, land use and zoning, and ownership disputes. We have a lengthy track record of success at trial, as well as in alternative dispute resolution forums such as arbitration, mediation, and administrative proceedings.

Real estate litigation is a specialized legal practice that demands a comprehensive understanding of both business and litigation. As a well-known business litigation firm, Cozen O’Connor is ideally suited to operate effectively at this intersection of corporate interests and dispute resolution. Our real estate attorneys are involved in some of the most complex transactions in the nation, which means that we are fully versed in the most current deal structures. That familiarity is an enormous benefit on the litigation side because it enables us to identify substantive issues and assess the relative merit of various positions.

In addition to the requisite real estate background, our attorneys also have excellent trial skills. Members of the real estate litigation team have been handling major cases for decades, and can claim a successful track record before trial judges, juries, and appellate courts alike. This experience not only enables us to steer clients more quickly through the crucible of court, it also supports our ability to negotiate beneficial settlement agreements. Adversaries know that we settle to serve clients’ interests, not to avoid trial, which eliminates needless brinksmanship and strengthens our bargaining position.

 

SERVICE AREAS

  • Handle landlord-tenant disputes
  • Litigate commercial evictions, mortgage foreclosures, eminent domain claims, and condemnations
  • Lead rent reset proceedings and valuation proceedings
  • Resolve disputes among investor groups, joint venturers, and partners
  • Counsel clients on real estate tax reassessment appeals
  • Lead real estate finance and insolvency litigation
  • Handle ownership, easement, and boundary disputes
  • Review breach of lease options, right-of-first-refusal agreements, and buy-sell agreement claims
  • Conduct land use and zoning appeals

Experience

Publications

Modernizing Real Property Easements For The 21st Century

March 22, 2022

The Uniform Easement Relocation Act (UERA) was approved by the NCC in 2020 in order to resolve the myriad regional approaches to the relocation of easements.

'Yellowstone' Will Live on Through Creative Practitioners' [New York Law Journal]

June 04, 2019

The article covers the recent talk amongst real estate litigation attorneys as to the impact of the Court of Appeals decision in 159 MP Corp. v. Redbridge Bedford.

Escalations and Rents - the Defensive Side of the Voluntary Payment Doctrine [New York Law Journal]

April 18, 2013

The voluntary payment doctrine has been long applied to prevent tenants from recovering payments made to the landlord which were tendered “voluntarily”—to wit, without dispute or inquiry—over a lengthy period of time. For example: a tenant tenders payment of real estate taxes to the landlord for over 10 years pursuant to what the tenant later claims to be an erroneous method of calculation, resulting in an overbilling. With this newfound knowledge, the tenant brings suit against the landlord to recover the amounts overpaid. By virtue of the voluntary payment doctrine, under this scenario, the tenant is, in essence, out of luck.

In The News

More Than 200 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named Best Lawyers and Ones to Watch

August 22, 2022

210 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 24 of the firm’s nationwide offices for inclusion in the 2023 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

Cozen O’Connor Continues its West Coast Expansion, Adding Three Veteran Southern California Litigators to its Los Angeles Office

March 04, 2020

Thomas Lombardi, Devin Donohue and Brett Watson — from one of southern California’s leading litigation boutiques Lombardi & Donohue — have joined the firm as members.

Cozen O’Connor Recognized As a Best Law Firm in 24 Practice Areas Nationwide, 106 Practice Areas Regionally

November 05, 2019

The U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations and peer review from leading attorneys in their field.

First Lutheran Church Reaches Settlement with City of Saint Paul in Religious Liberty Suit

February 06, 2019

In the settlement, the city acknowledged that RLUIPA is an important and central aspect of its land use decisions and is a primary consideration in processing and responding to land use applications made to the city.

Contacts

H. Robert Fiebach

Senior Counsel

rfiebach@cozen.com

(215) 665-4166

Menachem J. Kastner

Member

mkastner@cozen.com

(212) 453-3811

People

Awards

Cozen O’Connor Recognized As a Best Law Firm in 24 Practice Areas Nationwide, 106 Practice Areas Regionally

November 05, 2019

The U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations and peer review from leading attorneys in their field.

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