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Real Estate Law

From transactions to litigation, real estate matters can be some of the most stressful and costly endeavors in which individuals or businesses engage. Even a “standard” real estate transaction can be confusing to review. Having an experienced real estate attorney looking out for your best interests can relieve that stress and protect you from great financial loss.

The purchase of a home is the largest investment most people make in their life. The Pennsylvania Association of Realtors’ Standard Agreement alone has thirteen pages of obligations and duties that the buyer and seller must understand and comply with. From mortgage contingencies to seller’s disclosures, to the multitude of inspections that the buyer “may” undertake in a real estate contract defines if and how the sale will take place. Even though the two sides have the same goal of getting through closing, the buyer and seller have competing goals when it comes to protecting their interests.

Another issue associated with residential real estate is deed fraud. In 2018, reports of deed fraud rose as much as 70%. Many low income residents and their descendants suddenly found that they no longer owned their home. This happens when a false buyer forges the owner’s signature and either finds a less than scrupulous notary to execute the fraudulent deed or fakes a notarization. The false deed transferring the property is then recorded and the new “owner” then sells the property again. Deed fraud can cause serious problems for the legitimate owner of the property as well as the people or companies purchasing the property.

Commercial transactions can also be complicated. Because commercial properties are used strictly for business purposes, a great deal of regulations apply. Business structures can affect lending, ownership, zoning and tax issues associated with the real estate transaction. When issues of title, breach, or fraud arise, you need someone to help you solve the problem.

Whether you or your business are buying or selling a piece of real estate or a conflict has arisen with a piece of property you own, Leonard Sciolla’s Real Estate Practice Group can help. For Pennsylvania matters, call John J. Leonard or Robert R. Atkins at (215) 567-1530. For New Jersey matters, call Paul H. Schultz at (856) 564-4611. You can also find us online at

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