Residential Real Estate Lawyers
Protecting Your Interests
Cases We Handle:
- General Litigation (if you wish to sue or are being sued)
- Encroachments on your property
- Easement disputes
- Fencing issues
- Property Damage by neighbors
- Fraudulent home sale transactions Deceptive Seller/Buyer claims
- Deed Restrictions
- Contractor disputes
- Improper/defective installations or repairs
- Pool construction issues
- HOA violations
- Home sale Contract Review
- Deeds: drafting, researching title
- Landlord defense against personal injury claims
- Surface water issues
Litigation is where you are looking to a Court to resolve a matter that cannot be resolved any other way. It is a process that requires an expert hand to guide through the nuances to arrive at a good solution. Litigation should not be taken lightly, neither should it be dropped once it seems difficult. We litigate because we believe we have been wronged, and the result is either money to compensate or an order preventing something from occurring. Let the experienced litigators at Sprigg-Novak Law be with you through this process. After all it is your interests, let us help you protect them.
Encroachments On Your Property
Encroachments occur when some other person or entity places their property over the property line and claims it as theirs, or just wont move it back when asked. Encroachments can be as simple as a flowerbed or horrific as the entire wall of a building. The best prevention to encroachment is knowing your property lines and that requires either reading your survey or having one made that it can be interpreted by an expert. Armed with an accurate survey, you have a good idea of any encroachments on your land.
An easement is a part of your land that you allow others to use for either specific or general purposes. The benefit can be to both parcels of land, either the burdened one (the main land owner) or the beneficiary (the one with the easement). We all do understand easements, for example any homeowner generally has given an easement to the internet or phone company to place a line to the house. Easements are complex. For example, certain easement are implied by law, such as if you have a landlocked neighbor, the Court or by agreement states that they are allowed access to their land through yours. This does not mean that they can damage your property or use the easement for more than entering or exiting. Easements require legal analysis to see many factors such as if it is still an easement, because its main reason no longer applies, or if there are changes to the easement that may require redrawing it, or taking it to Court to determine the scope and type of easement.
Fences are important. They mark our property, they give us privacy, they keep our pets and animals where they are supposed to be. When fences fail due to damage, are not kept up or even exit on your property when it is supposed to be on the property line, you have a fencing issue. Fencing issues are one of the most contested legal issues between neighbors because it is not just that the fence exists, but the events around the fence that cause people to become upset with one another. Fencing issues sometimes require a third party to examine all the issues with the fence and help make the situation correct for all the parties. Sometimes fencing issues requires litigation. Here you need an experienced attorney to promote your property rights and be able to make a cogent case to protect your assets.
Property Damage by Neighbors
Property damage by your neighbor is a pretty rare event. However, when it does occur, most offending neighbors want to make amends and fix the damage so that all can live peacefully together. Then there is the other end of the spectrum: neighbors who intentionally damage your property out of spite, anger or simply a personality issue-they don’t like you or your family. Regardless of the reason, you need an attorney to sort out your best resolution. Sometimes, but generally not, this involves law enforcement. For the most part, you will require a litigation attorney to help you get an accurate statement of the damage, place the events in a manner that a Court can see why it should rule on your damages and finally collect from the neighbors when they have a judgment against them. You specifically will need a real estate litigation attorney if your neighbor accuses you and sues you for damaging their property when that was not the case at all.
Trespass means placing a person or an article on property not your own and leaving it there for any matter of time. Trespass becomes more serious when the offending party is using your property for their benefit when they don’t have permission. A minor example would be that some neighborhood person enters into your property and uses the hot tub on a regular basis. Trespassing can be a Court intervening event where there is a judgment against the trespasser. The monetary awards in trespassing are mostly minor, but once a trespassing judgment is against a person, the penalties multiply in any subsequent judgment.
Fraudulent Home Sale Transactions Deceptive Seller/Buyer Claims
You buy a home and you may or may not have signed the “as is” statement meaning you have purchased the home in its exact condition and accept it. However, defects that were not disclosed to you, and may have been known to the previous homeowner are cause for a lawsuit-particularly when there are misstatements as to square footage, mineral rights or other major issues with the property such as known zoning violations.
Contractor Home Repair/Pool Construction Disputes
Contractors who do not complete repairs, or who provide faulty repairs are the bane of a homeowner. Contractors can threaten your house with a mechanics lien that could foreclose your home. Here you need a litigators with a strong background in not allowing contractors to bully you and we hold them to account of their workorders and contracts. We are not afraid to file suit immediately against unscrupulous contractors especially those in the pool service and build industry that prey on homeowners during the summer season.
When you purchase your home that is in an HOA controlled area, you sign a document giving the HOA extraordinary rights over your home. This document called the Declarations and Covenants states that you have read the HOA rules and will abide by them including paying their fees. HOA boards run the spectrum between amazing and fascist. We hold HOA boards to the strict letter of the statute, and if there exists an discrepancy in how the HOA has determine any fines, or if the HOA neglects its duties to repair common areas between homes, you need litigators who will challenge them to obey their own bylaws and the Texas Property Code.
Home Sale Contract Review
If you are not sure of what your sales contract means, particularly if it is a non-standard contract between yourself and the seller, you need independent attorney review of the terms and conditions. An ounce of cure to prevent major headaches down the way.
Deeds: Drafting, Researching Title
Situations can occur where you may not have title to the property, or the title has what is deemed a “cloud” by the title company and you need attorneys to investigate and if necessary bring the matter to the Court in a Suit to Clear Title so that what you have either purchased or have inherited becomes your property.
Landlord Defense Against Personal Injury Claims
When a person becomes injured on your land, you may be liable for that injury. However, there are many issues to determine if your are liable or not. Homeowners are sued daily by people who claim injury on the land, but are looking to make quick money from your being scared that maybe you did or did not do something. Here you need experience litigators who have heard all these stories and are able to cut through the truth and lies protecting you in the process. Sprigg-Novak Law Firm has many successes in defending homeowners against these claims.
Surface Water Issues
You are eating dinner and suddenly a tidal wave of wave comes over your back fence hits your in ground pool and shatters your entire line of back windows leaving your first floor under a foot of water. Sounds far-fetched? No, this occurred to a family in 2005. The utility company hired a bunch of incompetent tree trimmers who dropped the branch cut around the power lines straight down into a spillway clogging it. After a few years of rain, it flooded and the result was terrible for this family. Surface water is a complex issue. Generally if a person or entity makes a change to the surface that diverts the normal course of water, and this cause damage, they are liable. Determining all the factors involved and rebuilding how the water damage occurred requires the experienced litigators at Sprigg-Novak law.