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Introductory Remarks
Coming Events
CLE Anytime
Recent Cases

The Real Property Section Newsletter is published monthly by the Real Property Section.

Rachel M. Sanders
Senior Counsel | Real Estate Litigation
Allen Matkins Leck Gamble Mallory & Natsis LLP


Real Property Executive Committee:


Kelsey M. Thayer 

Vice Chair (Programming)
Teresa Y. Hillery 

Vice Chair (Communications)
Rachel M. Sanders

Vice Chair (Membership)
Daniel K. Liffmann

Owen P. Gross

Trudi J. Lesser

Immediate Past Chair
Eric A. Altoon



Norman A. Chernin
Claire Hervey Collins
Caroline Dreyfus
Brant H. Dveirin
Kimia Ghalambor
Marcia Gordon
Jane L. Hinton
Laurence L. Hummer
Danielle Katzir
Linda E. Spiegel
Ira J. Waldman

Law School Liaison
Misty M. Sanford

Barrister’s Liaison (non-voting)
Vivienne Chen

Section Administrator
Fatima Jones



Commercial Development and Leasing Subsection, Co-Chairs
Steven Farenbaugh
Dan Villalpando

Construction Law Subsection, Chair
John D. Hanover

General Real Property Subsection, Co-Chairs
Michael Davis
Joe Dzida

Land Use Planning and Environmental Law, Subsection Chair
Julie Hamill

Real Estate Finance Subsection, Co-Chairs
Mark Hikin
Gretta Moy

Title Insurance Subsection, Chair
James H. Treadwell



Roy H. Aaron*
Eric A. Altoon 
Michael J. Bayard
Stephen M. Blitz
Susan J. Booth
Elizabeth Spedding Calciano
Robert E. Carter
Norm Chernin
R. Bradbury Clark*
Claire Hervey Collins 
Professor William Coskran
Caroline Dreyfus
Anson Dreison*
Brant H. Dveirin
Peter Gelles
Gail Gordon*
Byron Hayes, Jr.
Gordon Hunt
Bryan C. Jackson
Michael S. Klein
Preston Kline*
Bernard Kolbor
Robert Krueger*
Mark L. Lamken*
Marvin Leon
Gregg J. Loubier
Victor I. Marmon
Jerold L. Miles
O’Malley M. Miller
Rodney Moss*
Donald C. Nanney
Gytis L. Nefas
Carl B. Phelps
Laurence G. Preble
James D. Richman
Peter E. Robinson
Floyd Sayer*
Margaret J. Schock
Ronald I. Silverman
Sarah V.J. Spyksma
Theresa C. Tate
Timothy M. Truax
Richard S. Volpert
Ira J. Waldman
Alan Wayte*
Pamela L. Westhoff
John W. Whitaker
George H. Whitney*
Norma J. Williams
John M. Yunker, Jr.
Paula Reddish Zinnemann




Introductory Remarks

The Real Property Section is excited to feature new monthly member spotlights! Every month, we will feature one or more section members who will share insights into their real estate practices and more. If you are a member of the Real Property Section and would like to be spotlighted in an upcoming post and newsletter, please contact our social media manager, Vivienne Chen, at Our first monthly member spotlights feature Kelsey Thayer, Chair of the Real Property Section, and Joe Dzida, Co-Chair of the General Real Property Subsection.

LACBA RP Spotlight - Kelsey Thayer-500w

LACBA RP Spotlight - Joe Dzida-500w

Rachel M. Sanders
Editor, Real Property Section Newsletter
E-mail address:

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LACBA Real Property CLE Anytime

Even if you can't attend our Real Property Section events, you can earn CLE credit by viewing our streaming videos. Here are a few options. Click any link below.

Completion Guaranties: Negotiating and Drafting Tips
Supporting Women Real Estate Attorneys – Empowerment Strategies
Recent Developments in Real Estate Finance
Nuts and Bolts of Commercial Real Estate Foreclosure

Recent Cases
- Environmental Law -

A district court abused its discretion in imposing sanctions on a party for engaging in environmental testing before the start of a lawsuit absent any evidence of bad intent or improper purpose. A deterrent rationale for a sanction shows that the sanction is punitive, rather than compensatory; any punitive sanction imposed under a court's inherent authority against a party in civil litigation requires criminal-type safeguards. A court's discretion to deny a fee award to a prevailing plaintiff is narrow, and a denial of fees under the Toxic Substances Control Act on the basis of special circumstances is extremely rare. An organization that serves a specialized segment of the community that is the primary beneficiary of its activities has standing in a lawsuit bearing a close connection between its mission and the interests of non-members.

America Unites for Kids v. Rousseau - filed Jan. 22, 2021
Cite as 2021 S.O.S. 16-56390
Full text click here >

The manner in which the Water Control Boards consider and comply with Water Code §1324 is within their discretion; every case arising under this statute will differ as to what economic considerations must be evaluated. A board adequately considered economic considerations when setting effluent limitations in a wastewater discharge permit where the board explained that the cost of regulating discharges is highly variable among the permittees, provided ranges and averages of cost data and economic impacts in several categories, considered how much more the permittees' costs might be under the permit's terms, identified potential sources of funds to cover the costs of the permit, and concluded the failure to regulate would increase health-related expenses.

City of Duarte v. State Water Resources Control Board - filed Jan. 28, 2021, Fourth District, Div. Three
Cite as 2021 S.O.S. 403
Full text click here

A city violated the California Environmental Quality Act by failing to send a notice of determination for a project to an individual who had made a written request in advance of the project's approval, to receive such notice, but CEQA contains no remedy for that violation; such violation cannot excuse or cure the untimeliness of a petition for writ of mandate if the notice was duly filed with the county clerk and available for review by all potential litigants before the petition was filed.

Organizacion Comunidad de Alviso v. City of San Jose (Microsoft) - filed Feb. 9, 2021, Sixth District
Cite as 2021 S.O.S. 632
Full text click here

- Equitable Servitude -

Civil Code §885.060(c) limits the enforcement of an equitable servitude to the terms the parties negotiated and renders it unenforceable by a power of termination. The doctrine of equitable servitudes makes enforceable at equity a covenant appurtenant to other benefited property that might be otherwise unenforceable. Increases in property value alone do not constitute changed conditions sufficient to invalidate otherwise enforceable equitable servitudes.

Southern California School of Theology v. Claremont Graduate University - filed Jan. 22, 2021, Second District, Div. One
Cite as 2021 S.O.S. 305
Full text click here

- Foreclosures -

A mortgage-savings clause in a home owners association's covenants, conditions, and restrictions was void as a matter of law where the clause provided that any lien for unpaid assessments would be subordinate to the first deed of trust, in contravention of Nevada law; the clause, by itself, does not constitute unfairness affecting the foreclosure sale of a home subject to the CC&Rs.

U.S. Bank v. White Horse Estates Homeowners Association - filed Feb. 8, 2021
Cite as 2021 S.O.S. 19-17033
Full text click here >

- Sovereign Immunity -

Sovereign immunity bars a quiet title action to establish a public easement for coastal access on property owned by an Indian tribe.

Self v. Cher-Ae Heights Indian Community of the Trinidad Rancheria - filed Jan. 26, 2021, First District, Div. Five
Cite as 2021 S.O.S. 332
Full text click here


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