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VOLUME 15 | NUMBER 6 | JUNE 2020
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Introductory Remarks
Coming Events
CLE Anytime
Recent Cases

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

Teresa Y. Hillery
Vice President,
Sr. Commercial Underwriting Counsel
Fidelity National Title - National Commercial Services


Real Property Executive Committee:


Eric A. Altoon

Vice Chair (Programming)
Kelsey M. Thayer

Vice Chair (Communications)
Teresa Y. Hillery

Vice Chair (Membership)
Daniel K. Liffmann

Laurence L. Hummer

Rachel Meghan Sanders

Immediate Past Chair
Claire Hervey Collins



Norman A. Chernin
Caroline Dreyfus
Brant H. Dveirin
Marcia Gordon
Owen P. Gross
Danielle Katzir
Linda E. Spiegel
Ira J. Waldman

Law School Liaison
Misty Marie Sanford

Barrister’s Liaison (non-voting)
John Ford

Section Administrator
Fatima Jones



Commercial Development and Leasing Subsection, Co-Chairs
Trudi J. Lesser
Herman Enayati

Construction Law Subsection, Chair
John D. Hanover

General Real Property Subsection, Co-Chairs
William J. Bernfeld
Stacey A. Villagomez

Land Use Planning and Environmental Law, Subsection Chair
Julie Hamill

Real Estate Finance Subsection, Co-Chairs
Jane L. Hinton
Gretta Moy

Title Insurance Subsection, Co-Chairs
Elmira Rezaei Howard
James H. Treadwell



Roy H. Aaron*
Michael J. Bayard
Stephen M. Blitz
Susan J. Booth
Elizabeth Spedding Calciano
Robert E. Carter
Norm Chernin
R. Bradbury Clark*
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

Thank you to all who attended our First Zoom Real Property Installation. For a special message from Outgoing Chair, Eric A. Altoon, click here.

Congratulations to Incoming Chair, Kelsey Thayer,
and the 2020-2021 Officers:

1st Vice Chair of Programming: Teresa Y. Hillery
2nd Vice Chair of Membership: Daniel Liffmann
3rd Vice Chair of Communications: Rachel Sanders
Treasurer: Owen Gross
Secretary: Trudi Lesser


Teresa Y. Hillery
Editor, Real Property Section Newsletter
E-mail address:

Find Us on Social Media

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Coming Events

July 9, 12:30 - 1:30 p.m.
Loan Modifications

As result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many lenders now find themselves in a situation where a borrower’s financial condition has been impacted by non-payment of rent, supply chain disruption, and delays in projects, resulting in the need to modify the loan. Join us as our panel of experts examine the various issues and concerns that arise when modifying a loan from the perspective of both lender and borrower.

> Click here for more information


July 10, 12:00 - 12:15 p.m.
Recovering Attorney’s Fees in Bankruptcy Court Litigation

This panel is hosted by the Remedies Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association and co-sponsored by the Insolvency Law Committee of the Business Law Section of the California Lawyers Association.

Recent federal cases have changed the recoverability of attorney’s fees in bankruptcy proceedings under California law and the Bankruptcy Code. This program will provide an in-depth discussion of the important decisions regarding the availability of attorney’s fees in litigating issues in bankruptcy court, including contractual attorney’s fees provisions under California law, and an overview of the strategies for both creditors and debtors to pursue and recover attorney’s fees when litigating in bankruptcy court.

Audience questions during the Zoom webinar are welcome and encouraged. We also welcome questions prior to the program, which can be sent to Joseph Boufadel at

Written materials will be distributed electronically prior to the program.

> Click here for more information


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
- Boundaries -

All extrinsic evidence that is relevant to prove the parties' mutual intention is admissible; if extrinsic evidence is relevant to prove the meaning of an ambiguous judgment, that evidence is admissible whether or not it was part of the record in that case. Where extrinsic evidence shows that there were both artificial improvements and artificial fill in the immediate vicinity of properties owned by a group of plaintiffs, the artificial accretions rule applies to support an interpretation that a prior judgment against their predecessor-in-interest fixed the boundary of their properties.

SLPR, L.L.C. v. San Diego Unified Port District - filed May 22, 2020, Fourth District, Div. One
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2296
Full text click here >

- CEQA -

There is no blanket prohibition on using carbon offsets to mitigate greenhouse emissions, but a greenhouse gas mitigation measure allowing certain projects to mitigate their in-county emissions by purchasing carbon offsets did not comply with the California Environmental Quality Act where the measure contained unenforceable performance standards and improperly defers mitigation. A supplemental environmental impact report violates CEQA when its discussion of cumulative impacts ignores foreseeable impacts from probable future projects, its finding of consistency with a regional transportation plan is not supported by substantial evidence, and the analysis of alternatives ignores a smart-growth alternative.

Golden Door Properties, LLC v. County of San Diego - filed June 12, 2020, Fourth District, Div. One
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2803
Full text click here >

California Environmental Quality Act Guidelines §15162(c) applies only when, after the original approval of a project, a further discretionary approval on that project is required; a city’s post-approval actions implementing a project did not constitute an approval within the meaning of §15162(c).

Willow Glen Trestle Conservancy v. City of San Jose - filed May 18, 2020, Sixth District
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2408
Full text click here >

- Clean Air Act -

Federal Clean Air Act expressly preempts state and local government efforts to apply laws against tampering with automobile emission control systems prior to sale, but does not bar enforcement by such governmental entities of regulations against tampering with post-sale vehicles.

In re Volkswagen - filed June 1, 2020
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 18-15937
Full text click here >

- Development -

When a local agency approves a vesting tentative map or enters into a development agreement, the builder is entitled to proceed on the project under the local rules, regulations, and ordinances in effect at the time of the approval.  However, a subsequent development agreement extending the term of the vesting tentative map can alter the builder’s vested rights under the vesting tentative map.

North Murrieta Community, LLC v. City of Murrieta - filed June 8, 2020, Fourth District, Div. Two
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2659
Full text click here >

- EPA -

The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act provides two requirements for conditional amendment of an existing registration; first, the Environmental Protection Agency must determine the applicant has submitted satisfactory data pertaining to the proposed conditional registrations, and second, it must find the amendment will not significantly increase the risk of any unreasonable adverse effect on the environment.

National Family Farm Coalition v. United States Environmental Protection Agency - filed June 3, 2020
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 19-70115
Full text click here >

- Landlord Tenant -

The prohibition on arbitration agreements in residential lease or rental agreements applies to tenancy provisions in a continuing care retirement community.

Harris v. University Village Thousand Oaks, CCRC, LLC - filed June 1, 2020, Second District, Div. Six
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2529
Full text click here >

When the owner of a single-family home rents bedrooms in the home to separate tenants, the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act does not exempt each of the tenants’ rooms from local rent control even though the home is considered an exempt dwelling.

Owens v. City of Oakland Housing, Residential Rent and Relocation Board (Barghout) - filed May 29, 2020, First District, Div. Three
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2532
Full text click here >


People v. Son - filed May 29, 2020, Fifth District
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2535
Full text click here >

- Zoning -

A defendant could not assert a viable double jeopardy claim where he could not prove the conduct at issue in a criminal complaint constituted the same offense as the conduct at issue in a civil complaint. A trial court could reasonably infer that a defendant had the financial ability to pay the $6 million civil penalties assessed against him based on the evidence he controlled a substantial amount of commercial and residential real estate in Los Angeles County. The medical-marijuana regulations for the City of Los Angeles are neither vague nor uncertain. An individual defendant can be held personally at-fault for zoning and Health and Safety Code violations at a property owned by a trust where he intentionally allowed the unlawful uses to continue despite notice and demand that they cease, and because his conduct in response to the notices, demands, and civil actions rose to the level of negligent disregard of the ongoing violations.

People v. Braum - filed April 22, 2020, publication ordered May 22, 2020, Second District, Div. Five
Cite as 2020 S.O.S. 2286
Full text click here >


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