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Real Estate

Jackson & Campbell, P.C. has served the legal needs of the real estate industry for over a century. Practical experience with real estate transactions and highly specialized knowledge are combined with sophisticated courtroom skills to provide the highest level of representation and client satisfaction. These skills and knowledge have allowed our attorneys to expand the scope of litigated matters to include a wide array of real estate disputes. The Firm combines a sophisticated national practice with a well-established general practice at the local and regional levels. Representative clients include:

  • Commercial office building owners and managers
  • Commercial tenants
  • Condominiums, cooperatives, and multi-family housing associations, owners, developers, and managers
  • National title insurers
  • Non-profit associations
  • Regional financial institutions

Our team of professionals in the Real Estate Litigation and Transactions Practice Group dedicate themselves to assisting owners, developers, and managers of real property-based assets in accomplishing their strategic goals and in handling the everyday concerns of a successful operation. Their real estate-centered expertise ranges from the initiation, titling, and development of a new project through operations, management, and leasing to disposition, whether by sale or like-kind exchange.

Commercial Real Estate

Jackson & Campbell attorneys have the knowledge, skills, and litigation experience to help guide our clients, whether they are owners, developers, individuals, lenders, and trustees, through acquiring, selling, transferring, developing, or protecting residential real state in a complex multi-jurisdiction area, such as the greater Washington area.

Operating real property assets requires specialized knowledge and counsel. Problems that seem unique when first encountered by an owner or manager usually have been addressed and solved by our attorneys on numerous occasions in the past. Jackson & Campbell’s attorneys have experience in:

Litigation

  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements
  • Environmental hazard counseling and litigation, such as: plywood roofing, asbestos claims, lead-based paint claims, and sick building syndrome
  • Foreclosure
  • Water and sewer disputes

Transactions

  • Commercial leasing
  • Property management agreements
  • Compliance with ADA and other statutes governing the ownership of real property
  • Purchase and sale of commercial real estate and related financing
  • Real estate taxes and assessments
  • Vendor contracts and resolution of vendor contractual disputes

Condominium, Cooperative, and Multi-Family Housing

Condominium, cooperative, and multi-family housing is one of the most regulated industries in the country, with extensive government oversight ranging from federal fair housing laws through local zoning and the regulation of the landlord and tenant relationship. Jackson & Campbell’s attorneys have served managers and owners of cooperatives and condominiums and major regional and national apartment managers and owners on every aspect of legal risk and regulation in the industry, including:

Development

  • Advising boards of housing organizations on corporate governance and advocacy issues
  • Developing contracts and brokerage agreements
  • Counseling on environmental risks
  • Zoning and other local and municipal regulatory actions

Legislative Advocacy and Lobbying

  • Advocacy before D.C. agencies and the D.C. Council

Litigation

  • ADA counseling and litigation
  • Compliance with corporate governance and regulations
  • Employment
  • Fair Housing Act counseling and litigation
  • Rehabilitation Act counseling and litigation

Management

  • Corporate governance
  • Emotional support animals
  • Employment disputes and human resources issues
  • Management contracts
  • Residential leases
  • Taxation and municipal regulation
  • Tenant safety, premises liability, and drug use
  • Third-party criminal activity issues

Transactions

  • Condominium conversions
  • Construction financing and permanent financing
  • Contract negotiations
  • Financing: The capital intensive real property industry demands experienced, sophisticated financing counsel which Jackson & Campbell can provide. The group has represented borrowers and lenders in a wide variety of financing transactions and has provided counseling to national asset-based lenders.
  • Insurance coverage
  • Intergenerational transfers
  • Like-kind exchanges
  • Purchase and sale
  • Wi-Fi/cable company agreements

Residential Real Estate

Jackson & Campbell’s attorneys have the experience to help guide you through a complex multi-jurisdictional area, such as the greater Washington region. Whether acquiring, selling, transferring, developing, or protecting residential real estate, our attorneys have a wide breadth of experience representing individuals, associations, and business entities, through a variety of legal issues including:

Litigation & Administrative Hearings

  • Adverse possession
  • Boundary and easement disputes
  • Breach of warranties (statutory and title)
  • Construction contracts
  • D. C. Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA)
  • Partitions
  • Purchase and sale agreements

Transactions

  • Commercial lending/real estate financing
  • D. C. Office of Tax and Revenue
  • Deed of Trusts
  • TOPA
  • Negotiation of easements
  • Promissory Notes
  • Purchase and sale agreements
  • Tax
  • Transfer of properties to trusts and LLCs

Title Insurance

For decades, Jackson & Campbell has been a leader in representing title insurers. In both national and regional matters, our attorneys have developed a distinct and unique expertise in handling the complex litigation needs of title insurers and other real estate participants.

Our attorneys promptly analyze threats to the validity and priority of liens and title and immediate applications to courts for marshaling and seizure of assets or documents in the event that fraud or defalcation becomes apparent. Practical experience with real estate transactions and highly specialized knowledge of title insurance law are combined with sophisticated courtroom skills to provide the highest level of representation and client satisfaction. These skills and knowledge have allowed the attorneys to expand the scope of litigated matters to include the full array of real estate disputes.

Legislative Advocacy and Lobbying

  • Advocacy before D.C. agencies and the D.C. Council

Litigation

  • Adverse possession
  • Boundary disputes
  • Coverage issues
  • Defalcations
  • Equitable subrogation
  • Miscellaneous curative litigation
  • Quiet title action/declaratory judgments
  • Probate-related curative litigation
  • TOPA

Transaction

  • Coverage advice and counseling
  • April 2019
    Maryland Real Estate Update: April 2019

    On April 19, 2019, Judge Messitte of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland issued an unpublished opinion in Elm Cabin John, LLC v. United Bank that is certainly noteworthy for real estate practitioners. In this matter, Ms. Nancy Long owned three parcels in Montgomery County. As an individual in her 80s during the subject transactions, she is... Read More >

  • April 2019
    DC Circuit Applies Discovery Rule To Erroneous Land Surveys Of Commercial Land

    The case of Commonwealth Land Title Insurance Company v. KCI Technologies, Inc., concerns a title insurance company’s suit against two surveyors whose surveys failed to find a 12-inch encroachment on a parcel of commercial real property. Before purchasing the property, ICG 16th Street Associates commissioned a land survey that found no encroachment. The next year, it purchased the property... Read More >

  • April 2019
    Congratulations to our Attorneys and Practice Groups

    Jackson & Campbell, P.C. is proud to announce our 2019 Super Lawyers. Please join us in celebrating Nathan J. Bresee, Richard W. Bryan, Arthur D. Burger, David H. Cox, William E. Davis, Christopher P. Ferragamo, Robert N. Kelly, James N. Markels, Nicholas S. McConnell, and Brian W. Thompson; and... Read More >

  • April 2019
    Conservation Easements: Saving Our Green Spaces or Illegal Tax Shelters?

    A property owner who donates an easement of his or her property to a charitable organization for conservation or historical purposes is permitted to take a charitable deduction for the value of that donated property easement. The statutory requirements are set forth in Internal Revenue Code §170(h). There are many conservation easements that are fulfilling the intent of the legislation... Read More >

  • March 2019
    Additional Practical Analysis: Obduskey v. McCarthy & Holthus LLP

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously on March 20, 2019 in Obduskey v. McCarthy & Holthus LLP that a law firm hired to pursue a nonjudicial foreclosure under Colorado law was not a debt collector under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). In a nonjudicial foreclosure, notice to the parties and sale of the property occur outside... Read More >

  • March 2019
    Court Upholds Validity of Foreclosure Sale in Light of Debtor’s Failure to Seek a Stay Pending Appeal

    A recent decision issued by the Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia underscores the importance for both debtors and creditors to be especially cognizant of procedural rules when dealing with a property subject to foreclosure. In re: Bobbie Upasna Vardan involved a property that had been affected by four bankruptcies filed by the debtor or members of her... Read More >

  • March 2019
    Maryland Real Estate Update | March 2019

    The Court of Appeals of Maryland issued two recent decisions impacting landlord/tenant issues. Cushman & Wakefield of Maryland, Inc. v. DRV Greentec, LLC In Cushman & Wakefield of Maryland, Inc. v. DRV Greentec, LLC, filed on March 4, 2019, the Court of Appeals held that a commercial broker could not enforce an obligation to pay a commission against an owner’s assignee. In... Read More >

  • March 2019
    Revocable Trusts and Real Property in Washington

    When thinking about transferring a Washington, D.C. real property into a revocable trust, there are several considerations to take into account. Beginning Steps: To ensure the transfer occurs properly, a deed has to be recorded. A transfer is usually exempt from transfer and recordation taxes, provided that the trust is revocable and that the grantor remains the beneficiary. Deductions: In most circumstances, the property... Read More >

  • February 2019
    Tax Planning for Nonresident Aliens Who Own US Property

    Individuals who are not citizens or residents of the United States, known as nonresident aliens (NRA), need to be aware of the U.S. estate and gift taxes that will be applicable to their U.S. fixed assets, for example, U.S. real estate. If an NRA owns fixed assets located in the... Read More >

  • September 2018
    Pending Emergency Legislation to Affect Tax Sales and Recordation Tax on Leases

    The Washington, D.C. Council is considering B22-922: Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2018 which, among many provisions, contains a few changes of interest to real estate practitioners which are found here. Recordation Tax: On leases in excess of 30 years, the Washington, D.C. government may determine the fair market value of the leasehold interest... Read More >

  • September 2018
    Condo Liens Entitled To Super-Priority Status Regardless Of Number Of Months Sought

    Under D.C. Code sec. 42-1903.13, liens imposed by a condominium association for up to six months of unpaid condo fees were entitled to super-priority status ahead of all other liens on the condo. In two prior decisions, the D.C. Court of Appeals held that a foreclosure sale under such a super-priority lien necessarily wiped out all other liens of the... Read More >

  • September 2018
    D.C. Announces New Tax Rates for First-Time Homebuyer

    Washington, D.C.’s innovative First Time Homebuyer’s tax rate reduces the recordation tax to .725 percent. The statute is found at Official Code §42-1101(17). The tax rate and value of the property changes from year to year based upon the C.P.I. Effective on October 1, 2019, the purchase price may not exceed $632,500 and the income for a single-member household may not... Read More >

  • September 2018
    D.C. Tax Rate Changes Effective October 1, 2018

    The District of Columbia’s Office of Tax and Revenue has issued a notification of changes in various tax rates that will become effective on Monday, October 1, 2018. The real property tax for Class 2 properties will increase to $1.65 per $100 of value for properties worth less than $5,000,000; $1.77 from $5 million to $10 million; and $1.89 for... Read More >

  • August 2018
    New Maryland Statute: Corporate Articles of Transfer No Longer Needed to Transfer Real Property

    Until August 2018, Maryland was one of the few states that required a state-based corporation that transfers all of its real property assets to execute and file articles of transfer with the State Department of Assessment and Taxation (SDAT). This regulation is outlined in the Corporations and Associations Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland Section 1-101(y) and 3-109... Read More >

  • August 2018
    Virginia: No Bona Fide Purchaser of an Easement; Terms of Revocable Trust May Permit Transfer by Non-Trustee

    The recent case of Kruck v. Krisak, 2018 WL 2386671 (Fairfax Cir. Ct. 2018) addressed two issues of first impression in Virginia regarding bona fide purchasers and how the transfer of real property to a trust might affect a grant of an easement. The case began with an easement for a septic field that was granted in 1974 by Austin Foster... Read More >

  • August 2018
    Housing Licensing and TOPA in the District of Columbia

    Recent changes to the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA) in the District of Columbia have had broad repercussions in the single-family rental market. Since TOPA’s inception, the competing purposes of maintaining a rental market and encouraging tenants to leave the rental market and become homeowners have resulted in a structure that is difficult to follow and has... Read More >

  • July 2018
    Concrete Tips for Negotiating Commercial Real Estate Leases in the District

    Join Firm President, John J. Matteo at the D.C. Bar on Tuesday, July 17 for a 2-hour CLE class.   All Communities Members Receive a $10 Discount on CLE Classes!... Read More >

  • June 2018
    Virginia Practice Tip - Enforceability of Leases under Statute of Conveyances

    On May 10, 2018, the Virginia Supreme Court issued a unanimous opinion in an appeal regarding the enforceability of a commercial lease. In The Game Place, L.L.C., et al. v. Fredericksburg 35, LLC the justices reviewed and applied the Statute of Conveyances, which is set forth in the Code of Virginia §55-2. The Statute of Conveyances requires that any freehold in... Read More >

  • May 2018
    D.C. Real Estate Loan Drafting Guidance

    Practical Law, a Thomson Reuters company that publishes online resources for attorneys, recently launched a state-by-state survey providing Real Estate Loan Drafting Guidance that caters to real estate finance practitioners.  Erica Litovitz and Brian W. Thompson contributed the DC-specific content, which Practical Law published on May 29, 2018 and is now available to subscribers of Practical Law. Published... Read More >

  • May 2018
    Conservation Easements: Congress Giveth and the IRS & Tax Court Taketh Away

    By: Nancy Ortmeyer Kuhn, Esq. Charitable conservation easements have long been controversial, and there was some concern that the new tax legislation enacted in December 2017[1] would limit the conservation easement charitable deduction.  However, there were no limits placed upon conservation easements, and even the syndicated easements[2] were left alone.  This particular area of the law is... Read More >

  • May 2018
    TOPA Update - Single-Family Homes, DC Legislation Passed

    This is an update from the articles posted March 9, April 4, April 6, and April 10, 2018 relating to Single-Family Homes – DC Legislation Proposed to Exclude from TOPA. The District of Columbia Council passed legislation today, April 10, 2018, that excludes single-family homes from TOPA. Bill 22-315, was first introduced last... Read More >

  • April 2018
    DC Reduced Rate of Recordation Tax – Applies to Revocable Trust

    The District recently passed legislation which reduces the Recordation Tax for most first-time homebuyers.  The Recordation Tax for a “first-time District homebuyer” purchasing “eligible property” is reduced to 0.725% (transfer taxes owed by the seller of 1.1% or 1.45% are unchanged) for houses and, for transfers of economic interests in a housing cooperative unit (co-op unit), the recordation tax rate is... Read More >

  • April 2018
    TOPA - Proposal to eliminate Bankruptcy and Court-Order Exemptions

    Earlier this month, Bill 22-0739 was introduced to the District of Columbia Council. The Bill is named the TOPA Bankruptcy Tenant Displacement Prevention Amendment Act of 2018. The Bill seeks to amend the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act to remove TOPA’s exemption of bankruptcy sales and to require owners of property acquired via court order to submit to TOPA... Read More >

  • March 2018
    DC Super-Priority Lien on a Condo Cannot Foreclose Subject to First Priority Mortgage

    Following from its decision in Chase Plaza Condominium Assoc. v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, 98 A.3d 166 (DC 2014), in which the DC Court of Appeals held that a DC condominium foreclosing on its statutory six-month super-priority lien could by law extinguish an otherwise first-priority mortgage when the proceeds of the sale were insufficient to satisfy that mortgage, the Court was... Read More >

  • November 2017
    Supreme Court Clarifies Which Deadlines Are Jurisdictional

    In Hamer v. Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, the Court, in a unanimous opinion by Justice Ginsburg, set forth a clear and easy way to tell whether a deadline is jurisdictional, and cannot be waived or extended, or is merely a “claim-processing rule” that can be extended: deadlines provided by statute are jurisdictional, while deadlines provided by court rules are... Read More >

  • September 2017
    Roy L. Kaufmann Testifies before the D.C. City Council on proposed TOPA legislation

    Roy L. Kaufmann, from the Firm's Real Estate Group, testified before the D.C. City Council's Committee on Housing and Neighborhood Revitalization on behalf of the D.C. Land Title Association.  He testified on a proposed legislation to amend the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA) called the TOPA Accessory Dwelling Act of 2017. REDLINE of DCLTA-requested revisions vs. current law 9-8-17... Read More >

  • September 2017
    New Emergency and Proposed Inclusionary Zoning Regulations

    The Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), which oversees the Inclusionary Zoning program in DC, has new proposed regulations relating to Inclusionary Zoning.  The nature of these Emergency and Proposed regulations, can be found here.  Although the regulations are called “proposed”, they are effective.  Public comment ends on September 30.  If you care to make any comments, you... Read More >

  • August 2017
    Wire Theft - Third Major Money Wiring Theft in DC Area. Stop, review your procedures and alert your staff today!

    By: Roy L. Kaufmann I have become personally aware of THREE wire thefts affecting title companies in the immediate DC metro area.  One, wherein fraudsters got away with over $1,500,000, was the subject of a recent lawsuit. This is affecting local title companies -... Read More >

  • August 2017
    Upcoming Event: How Women Lead

    How Women Lead Featuring Flora D. Darpino, 39th U.S. Army Judge Advocate General... Read More >

  • July 2017
    Right of First Refusal Must Be In Writing

    The United States District Court for the District of Columbia restated the fundamental principle that in order for a right of first refusal to be enforceable, it must be in writing under the Statute of Frauds.  A tenant under a restaurant lease sued its landlord when the latter sold the real property in which the leased premises was located without... Read More >

  • July 2017
    Headstrong HOA Board Member Puts Himself in Harm’s Way Over Fair Housing Issues

    In a recent case decided by the D.C. Court of Appeals, the court heard a matter involving the intersection between community association governance and fair housing law.  In this case, Wilfred Welsh, a board member of the Chaplin Woods Homeowners Association (the “HOA”), sued fellow HOA members Beverly McNeil and Alvin Elliott (the “McNeils”), claiming that the McNeil’s violated the... Read More >

  • June 2017
    Court Provides Guide For Defining Property In A Takings Case

    St. Croix has a regulation that prohibits the owners of two neighboring properties along the St. Croix River from being separately sold or built upon unless each property has at least an acre of developable land. The Murrs owned two such parcels, each with less than an acre available to be developed. The Murrs wanted to sell one of the... Read More >

  • April 2017
    Emotional Support Animals in Cooperative Apartment and Condo Communities: What Every Association and Owner Should Know

    An emotional support animal (commonly referred to as an “ESA”) is a companion animal (typically a dog or cat) that provides therapeutic benefit to an individual with a mental or psychiatric disability. An ESA is not the same thing as a “pet”. Rather, for a resident of a Coop or Condo who is living with a mental or psychiatric disability,... Read More >

  • February 2017
    Commercial Tenant’s Lease – Estoppel and Attornment Considerations

    A standard provision of commercial lease agreements is an agreement by the Tenant to execute estoppel certificates, and to attorn to a lender. An estoppel certificate is a statement from the tenant to either a lender or a prospective purchaser that clarifies: what property is leased (often includes square footage) the length term of the lease that the lease has or... Read More >

  • February 2017
    Forgiven Debt – Taxable to the Borrower?

    Generally, if a borrower is required to pay a sum certain at a specific time, the obligation is considered “debt” under the Internal Revenue Code.  If the lender forgives a portion, it has “cancelled” the debt and the borrower must declare and take into income the dollar amount cancelled.  A lender may unilaterally decide that a debt is not collectable... Read More >

  • November 2016
    Attorneys Quoted in Legal Description Article

    Roy Kaufmann and Brian Thompson, attorneys here at Jackson & Campbell, P.C., were in The Legal Description article "Trump Victory Opens Door for Industry Changes."... Read More >

  • September 2016
    Under TOPA, a Bona Fide Offer Cannot Be Based on Future Market Value

    On September 22, 2016, in Parcel One Phase One Assoc.., LLP v. Museum Square Tenants Ass’n., Inc., No. 15-CV-609, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the tenants’ association that Parcel One’s offer of sale was not a... Read More >

  • September 2016
    Work In Progress – Further Technical Modifications to ZR16

    The Office of Planning recommended last Friday to the Office of Zoning further revisions to the new zoning regulations that became effective on September 6, 2016 (“ZR16”).  Such revisions notably include changes to measurements such as lot occupancies.  The proposed revisions (found here) will be considered on September 12... Read More >

  • September 2016
    Are You Ready? DC’s Overhauled Zoning Regulations Become Effective September 6

    DC’s new zoning regulations – referred to as “ZR16” – become effective September 6.  They are the product of a multi-year review by the Zoning Review Taskforce of the original zoning regulations enacted in 1958 and amended or updated through a patchwork process in the succeeding decades.  The Zoning Review Taskforce was comprised of representatives of the DC Government, the... Read More >

  • July 2016
    MD: Montgomery County Recordation Tax Changes Effective September 1

    James E. Babb, Tax Operations Manager for the Montgomery County Department of Finance, issued a memorandum explaining the revisions to the law concerning recordation tax, which goes into effect on September 1, 2016. He has included 12 examples which are intended to help the public understand their interpretation of the new law as it pertains to recordation tax calculations. A copy of Bill 15-16 can... Read More >

  • June 2016
    VA: Foreclosure Purchasers Face New Potential Hurdle In Virginia

    In Parrish v. Federal National Mortgage Association, the Virginia Supreme Court ruled 5-2 that when a defendant raises a bona fide question of the plaintiff's title in an unlawful detainer/ejectment action before the General District Court, that court loses subject matter over the case and the plaintiff must vindicate its title in the Circuit Court, thereby creating another... Read More >

  • April 2014
    Online Filing - Income and Expense Report DC and Building Permits.

    DC moves its technology forward to facilitate easy on-line filing. Commercial property owners can anticipate receipt of notification from OTR that on-line filing of Income and Expense forms is available. While online filing will be option for this year, it will be mandatory next year. The due date for the form remains unchanged: April 15. The paper forms are available at the OTR website... Read More >