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Pardoe & Graham Real Estate, Inc. v. Schulz Homes Corp.: Oral Commission Agreement for New Home Construction Is Enforceable

June 1, 2000: 

The Supreme Court of Virginia recently considered whether the statute of frauds barred an oral contract for the sale of new home construction on a lot already owned by the home purchaser.

Smith v. First Union Nat'l Bank: Court Rules Sexual Harassment Policy Needs to Prohibit Gender-Based Harassment in Addition to Sexual Advances

June 1, 2000: 

The United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, recently considered an employer's sexual harassment policy and investigation in light of a former employee's "hostile work environment" allegations.

California Ass’n of REALTORS® v. Barry: CAR Lawsuit against Attorney Proceeds

June 1, 2000: 

A California appellate court has considered whether a trial court properly allowed a lawsuit by the California Association of REALTORS® (“CAR”) against attorney David Barry (“Attorney”) to proceed.

Greater Philadelphia Ass'n of REALTORS® v. City of Philadelphia: Philadelphia's "Sold" Sign Ban Unconstitutional

May 1, 2000: 

In response to a lawsuit brought by the Greater Philadelphia Association of REALTORS® ("GPAR"), the City of Philadelphia ("City") has agreed in a settlement between the parties that its ban on "sold" signs is unconstitutional. The ban was enacted in 1970 by the City Council.

A number of cities enacted bans on "sold" signs as an attempt to slow "white flight" from the cities to the suburbs. The ban was a reaction to the perception that real estate sales professionals were engaging in "blockbusting."

Lane v. Cole: Guest Can Bring Lawsuit for Fair Housing Act Violations

May 1, 2000: 

A federal court in Pennsylvania considered whether invited guests to rental property have the ability to bring a lawsuit for violations of the Fair Housing Act ("FHA"), this is the first time a court has issued an opinion on this topic.

Kezer v. Mark Stimson Assoc.: Broker Not Negligent for Failing to Disclose Environmental Problems near Property and Prior Adverse Reports on Water Supply

May 1, 2000: 

In 1999 Maine's highest court considered when a broker would be negligent for failing to disclose environmental problems in close proximity to the property, and also what duty a broker had to discover and disclose prior adverse water test results for a property's private water supply.

Royer v. Ohio Real Estate Comm'n: Commission's Failure to Follow Rules Results in Reversal of Sanction

April 1, 2000: 

An Ohio appellate court recently considered whether the Ohio Real Estate Commission's failure to follow procedural rules warranted dismissal of its sanction against a licensee.

Bazal v. Rhines: Restriction on Number of Dogs Was a Material Fact

April 1, 2000: 

A recent decision from the Court of Appeals of Iowa, Bazal v. Rhines, addressed issues of fiduciary duties and the duty of good faith. In this case, the Bazals (the "Sellers") owned a home in the Bowman Woods development in Iowa. In June 1995, they listed it for sale with Dick Brown who was affiliated with the Skogman Realty Company (the "Brokerage"). The Brokerage and affiliated companies had developed Bowman Woods, and it was the exclusive listing broker for all new homes in the development.

Montana Fair Hous., Inc. v. Am. Capital Dev., Inc.: Montana Federal Court Rules Developer Violated the FHA

April 1, 2000: 

A federal district court in Montana recently considered whether the actions of an architect, builder, and owners of a low-income housing project violated the federal Fair Housing Act ("FHA").

Wright v. Rub-A-Dub Car Wash, Inc.: Landlord's Consent to Sublease Can Be Withheld to Address Environmental Problems on Property

April 1, 2000: 

The Supreme Court of Mississippi recently considered when it would be unreasonable for a landlord to withhold its consent to allow a tenant to enter into a sublease.

From 1990 forward, Rub-A-Dub Car Wash, Inc. ("Tenant") operated a car wash on subleased property owned by several individuals (collectively, the "Owners"). The sublease stated that the tenant could not sublease without the consent of the Owners. It also stated that the Owners’ consent could not be "unreasonably withheld."

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