The 3 Most Common Causes of Real Estate Litigation

As reported by Forbes, in any given year, 36%-53% of small business are involved in some form of litigation. Additionally, at any given time, as much as 90% of all businesses participate in a legal dispute. The real estate market is by no means an exception to this phenomenon. Real estate litigation is a tool used by – and against – real estate agents and brokers, buyers and sellers, and landlords and tenants in order to pursue legal rights and redress perceived or experienced wrongs. In this article, we will explore the 3 most common issues that lead to legal disputes in the real estate market.

1.  Breach of Contract

A breach of contract is one of the most common reasons why people go to court in the real estate world. In a real estate transaction, the terms of the contract may include specific details related to title clearance, closing date, assets included in the transaction, and more. In a lawsuit that claims breach of contract, the wronged party – or the plaintiff – must prove that they have fulfilled their contractual obligations while the other party – called the defendant – has not. If successful, the plaintiff is entitled to compensation for any losses that they may have suffered as a result of the breach of contract. In order to avoid breaking any provisions of a contract inadvertently, it is usually advisable to have an experienced real estate attorney review the agreement and provide an explanation of any of its clauses if necessary.

2.  Failure to Disclose Property Defects

In real estate sales in Florida, the seller is obligated by law to disclose any non-evident and known defects that may affect the value of the property. If a buyer discovers a previously undisclosed defect after the closing, he or she may initiate legal action against the seller claiming a failure to disclose. In order for such a lawsuit to be successful, however, the plaintiff must prove that the defect was known to the defendant – or reasonably should have been known – and it was purposefully concealed.

3.  Negligence or Breach of Duty

This is one of the common reasons why a real estate agent may get sued. Agents and realtors are legally obliged to act in the best interest of their clients and not in the interest of a salesperson or a third-party. Additionally, they must keep sensitive information about their client – such as any financial details – strictly confidential. At the same time, they have a duty to disclose any information that may be beneficial to the client. An agent must perform all the services to the best of his or her knowledge and abilities. Showing negligence in any of these matters can result in disadvantageous outcomes or losses for a real estate agent’s clients and may warrant a lawsuit.

In a Legal Dispute? Contact a Trusted Real Estate Lawyer

If you find yourself in the midst of an unraveling legal dispute, or if you have been wronged in connection with a real estate transaction, you need a trusted attorney at your side to make sure your rights are adequately represented and protected. Schlegel Livingston, LLC are Florida lawyers experienced in litigation matters related to all aspects of real estate transactions. Contact us today to talk about your situation and let us guide you through the best course of action in your circumstances.

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Schlegel Livingston LLC

Schlegel Livingston, LLC is an established real estate and probate/estate planning law firm in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We pride ourselves on being a very hands-on law office who will help our clients by any means necessary.

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