Real Estate

What is real estate law?

Real estate covers:

  • Residential / Commercial Purchase Agreements
  • Boundary Line Disputes
  • Contracts for Deed
  • Land Contracts
  • Litigation
  • Easements
  • Mechanic's Liens
  • Evictions/Landlord-Tenant
  • Condemnation
  • Partition Actions
  • Property Tax Appeals

Real estate, or real property law, is defined by Black’s Law Dictionary as real property—land and anything growing on, attached to, or erected on it, excluding anything that may be severed without injury to the land. Real property law can involve real estate sales, purchase agreements, land contracts (such as easements), contracts for deed, real estate litigation, partition actions, commercial real estate issues, evictions, unlawful detainers, landlord/tenant matters, zoning and land use issues, mechanic’s liens, and residential and commercial leases, including recreational or hunting leases.

Litigation

The object of civil law is to redress wrongdoing by seeking compensation or restitution. Unlike criminal matters, the wrongdoer (defendant) is not punished, and only suffers so much harm as is necessary to make good the wrong he or she has done to the victim (plaintiff).

Civil litigation is a broad phrase in the legal system which addresses actions in either state or federal court to seek damages, usually monetary compensation, on behalf of the aggrieved party. Civil litigation can involve family law, divorce, custody, contract matters, real estate matters, probate, juvenile protection, construction litigation, debtor/creditor law, and judgment enforcement. Generally, the legal system refers to anything not pertaining to criminal matters as a civil matter.

Under most circumstances in civil litigation, the victim needs to show (has the burden of proving) that the wrongdoer is 51% or more liable (i.e., responsible) for the damages. This is called the “preponderance of the evidence,” and is a far lower burden of proof than in a criminal case, where the prosecution has to prove a defendant’s guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt.”

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