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Real Estate Attorneys In Lafayette, LA

Most people understand that real estate transactions are complicated. The buy-sell agreement, title commitments, deeds, and other documents are essential to the successful completion of the transaction and minor mistakes can have major implications. You need an experienced Lafayette real estate attorney to guide you through the process and protect your rights. Otherwise, complex real estate transactions can cause severe issues without the right legal approach.

With decades of experience, the attorneys at Standard Law have represented a wide variety of individuals and businesses with their commercial real estate aspirations. At our law office, we understand that each case requires a unique approach; thus, we take the time to listen to you to identify your specific goals. From there, we develop a plan and keep you involved every step of the way so can make well-informed decisions about protection for your investment. Contact our legal team today to discuss your situation and learn more about how we can help.

Types of Real Estate and Real Estate Transactions

Residential real estate includes personal homes, townhomes, condominiums, apartments, and other types of property intended as primary private dwellings. Commercial real estate encompasses offices, retail stores, factories, warehouses; any location where businesses operate. Property zoned for development into residential property – such as a subdivision or apartment building – is usually labeled commercial real estate until it’s subdivided and sold to individual homeowners or leased to tenants.

Real estate litigation typically occurs when an agreement or transaction between two entities, such as individuals or businesses, goes awry. Some common examples of agreements and transactions in residential or commercial real estate are:

  • Sale/purchase of real property;
  • Purchase money financing for real property;
  • Lease agreements;
  • Property management agreements;
  • Property inspections;
  • Code compliance;
  • Surveying;
  • Zoning review and approval;
  • Construction contracts for new construction and renovations;
  • Property appraisals; and
  • Title commitments and title insurance.
Real Estate Attorneys In Lafayette, LA

Types of Commercial Real Estate Disputes

At Standard Law, we understand that real estate disputes often center around contractual disagreements, property development or management, and arguments about land usage or title. Luckily, our team of knowledgeable Lafayette real estate attorneys can help you with:

  • Breach of the lease, through non-payment of rent, failure to maintain commercial premises, or failure to operate a business in the manner described in a lease contract;
  • Disputes between property owners and tenants over the use of commercial space;
  • Zoning violations, or other disputes involving land use regulations;
  • Construction or development contracts, including lack of payment, unsatisfactory services, or worksite personal injury;
  • Disputes over the fair market value of property;
  • Undisclosed pollution or contamination of property; and
  • Easements or other encumbrances preventing intended uses of real property.

Types of Residential Real Estate Disputes

Disputes that may result from residential real property transactions include:

  • Breach of contract for the sale of real property;
  • Seller’s disclosures regarding the condition of the premises;
  • Disclosures regarding financing;
  • Disputes over boundary lines or other encroachments;
  • Nuisance claims;
  • Alleged violations of restrictive covenants;
  • Property Owner’s Association disputes;
  • Easements or other encumbrances;
  • Defects in the title;
  • Foreclosure or alleged wrongful foreclosure;
  • Division of real property in divorce; or
  • Division of real property among heirs in the case of a homeowner who died intestate, or without a will.

Understanding Property Law

Property law deals with what people own, how they can use it, and under what conditions. It applies to both real property (land) and personal belongings. Everyone in society is affected by property law in some way since ownership and use of land are so common. Property law also overlaps with estate law, family law, and municipal law.

Common Types Of Property Law

Transfers Of Property And Types Of Ownership

It’s crucial for property owners to understand both how they can own their property and the legal process of transferring ownership through sale or gifting. For example, a person may have sole ownership of a piece of property, or they might hold it jointly with others. If they have a joint tenancy, they may or may not be able to transfer their share of ownership to someone else at any time or upon their death.

Deeds

The type of deed you have is extremely important to your legal interest in the property. For instance, a warranty deed ensures the buyer full ownership of the property while a quitclaim deed only relinquishes any rights the person may have in regard to that said property. There are specific rules set by each state on how an effective deed should be both created and recorded.

Zoning Laws

A government can tell citizens what they can do with their land through zoning laws, which restrict how property owners can use real estate. Zoning laws can either be broad, like only permitting residential buildings in an area, or quite specific, such as demanding a certain distance between the road and any structures on a piece of land. Anyone who buys property must make themselves aware of the local zoning restrictions and follow them.

Mineral Rights

The Louisiana Mineral Code governs mineral rights in the state of Louisiana, as opposed to the law governing other states. This means that you cannot own natural resources, such as oil and gas until you start drilling for them. The production marks the beginning of ownership, even after a lease is signed. With that said, let’s discuss the types of land rights in Louisiana.

Mineral rights in Louisiana give you access to natural resources such as oil, gas, or coal located under the land. To better understand this concept, we must clarify that minerals can include oil, gas, underground water, coal, sulfur, and any other substance occurring naturally in the ground.

Private Land Use Laws

Private homeowner associations can restrict property use in the same way that the government restricts public property use. Property law involves creating, enforcing, and challenging private association laws. Just as a government attorney may take steps to enforce zoning violations, attorneys also represent private associations in order to enforce stricter rules about property usage. There are state-regulated laws that establish how these associations become authority figures and what they must do moving forward in order to create their own set of enforceable guidelines.

Eminent Domain

Eminent domain is the right of the government to take private property for public use, with or without the owner’s consent. Owners must be fairly compensated for their losses. Eminent domain laws are often challenged in court. Property attorneys represent landowners and government agencies in eminent domain cases.

Adverse Possession

Adverse possession is when somebody claims ownership of property they do not own and did not pay for, in certain situations allowed by law. To get land through adverse possession, a person must use the property as their own for a number of years – usually, this means living there openly, without hiding, and claiming ownership for at least 10 years. This can become an issue when people have used inaccurate border boundaries on their neighboring properties for some time. Adverse Possession is meant to settle land disputes and make sure that available land gets used.

Personal Property – Gifts, Lost Property, And Abandoned Property

The way real property is treated generally falls under state law. For example, some states see an engagement ring as a gift. If the couple doesn’t end up getting married, then the person who received the ring gets to keep it. However, in other states, an engagement ring is seen as a conditional gift. So if a marriage doesn’t happen, then that person has to return the ring. Plus, every state has its own set of rules for lost or abandoned property too.

Contact Our Lafayette Real Estate Attorneys Today

If you’re in need of legal assistance for a property transaction or litigation, look no further than the skilled Lafayette real estate attorneys at Standard Law. We regularly represent clients in sales and lease transactions, condominium developments, breach of contract claims, development disputes, lease disputes, and construction litigation. We even have an affiliate law firm, Standard Title, to help close real estate transactions. No matter what your specific needs may be, our team of qualified real estate attorneys is here to help.