Publications

Articles on Real Estate Law

New sections added and amendments made regarding motions and appeals to the Property Tax Appeal Board

March
2006
Illinois Law Update
Page 118
The Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board has amended Part 1910 of Title 86, 86 Ill Adm Code 1910. The Board has added new sections and amended the Part with regard to motions, notice and consolidation of appeals. 

Title insurers not in “business of supplying information” when they issue title commitments, supremes say

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
March
2006
LawPulse
Page 110
Some lawyers say the ruling "defies reality," while title insurers contend that it is squarely in the mainstream. 

 

No-Leasing Restrictions on Condominium Owners: The Legal Landscape

By Jordan I. Shifrin
February
2006
Article
Page 80
Here's a look at (mostly unsuccessful) challenges to these restrictions and some ways owners have tried to get around them.

Does Your Client Qualify for a Charitable Property Tax Exemption?

By Karyn R. Vanderwarren
January
2006
Article
Page 40
Whether you're counsel or a board member, you can help your charity try to qualify for an exemption and put the dollars you save to charitable use.

Predatory Lending Database Pilot Program

By James K. Weston
January
2006
Column
Page 44
A well-intentional law armed at predatory lending puts title companies and lawyers at risk, the author argues

The 2005 Amendments to The Illinois Mechanics Lien Act

By Howard M. Turner
December
2005
Article
Page 630
The changes make the act simpler and easier to understand, this author opines.

Anti-predatory-lending statute takes effect January 1

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
December
2005
LawPulse
Page 614
An amendment to the Real Property Disclosure Act will create a new predatory lending database. But some worry that it could unintentionally penalize good-guy lenders in targeted neighborhoods.

(Unrepresented) buyer (and seller, and opposing lawyer) beware

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2005
LawPulse
Page 558
What do you do when the other side in a real-estate transaction doesn't have a lawyer? ISBA members offer pointers.

In Defense of Kelo: One Lawyer’s Take on Takings

By John H. Brechin
October
2005
Article
Page 524
An approving look at the U.S. Supreme Court's much-criticized Kelo v City of New London.

RESPA – Here We Go Again?

By James K. Weston
October
2005
Column
Page 540
 Is HUD trying once again to amend the RESPA statute by regulation?

TROs: A Guide to Winning Emergency Relief in Illinois

By Richard L. Miller II
October
2005
Article
Page 530
A step-by-step guide to seeking temporary restraining orders and preliminary injunctions.

Mortgage Escrow Account Act expands “mortgage lenders” and notice requirements - PA 094-0050

September
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 446
On June 17, 2005, the Mortgage Escrow Account Act (Act) (765 ILCS 910/1 et seq) was modified from its original form so as to broaden the scope of "mortgage lender" to include savings banks, credit unions, mortgage bankers, and one who services the loan.

The Rental Housing Support Program Act’s Non-Deductible Charitable Donation

By James K. Weston
July
2005
Column
Page 366
Effective July 1, a new law requires counties to charge an extra $10 for every real estate document they record.

Is the Illinois Mechanics Lien Act Unconstitutional?

By Roger L. Price
June
2005
Article
Page 298
The author reviews recent decisions on the constitutional validity of the Act and recommends legislative action.

Finding a niche in FSBO home sales

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2005
LawPulse
Page 226
Some lawyers are making themselves available to do-it-yourself homesellers, with rewarding results.

How Illinois’ Homestead Exemption Really Works

By David J. Dwyer
May
2005
Article
Page 252
Here's how to calculate property taxes in Cook County under the new law.

Property Tax Code allows for post-judgment motions

May
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 232
On February 17, 2005, the Illinois Supreme Court reversed the appellate court's dismissal of the property owners' appeal and remanded the case to the appellate court. 

Reducing Real Estate Fraud – Thumbprints and How Much More?

By James K. Weston
April
2005
Column
Page 208
Two different bills requiring notaries to maintain logbooks and record thumbprints are introduced this session.

All constitutional requirements must be met in order for property to qualify for a charitable-use property tax exemption

March
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 116
On December 2, 2004, the Illinois Supreme Court reversed the orders of the appellate and circuit courts, which reversed the Illinois Department of Revenue's (Department) holding that the property in question was not tax exempt. 

Sellers subsidize closings via HUD-approved programs

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
March
2005
LawPulse
Page 110
The Nehemiah and AmeriDream programs allow sellers to pick up closing costs for homebuyers without violating RESPA. But is there a downside to this popular practice?

Attorney-Approval Clauses and Residential Real Estate Contracts: Mere Modification or More?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
February
2005
Article
Page 72
Most home-sale contracts empower attorneys to propose modifications. But do those "proposals" effectively nullify the contract?

For the doctrine of boundary by acquiescence to apply, both parties must acquiesce to the boundary in question for a considerable period of time

February
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 68
On December 9, 2004, the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, affirmed in part, vacated in part, and remanded in part the decision of the Circuit Court of McHenry County awarding the plaintiffs certain property by reason of adverse possession.

Beneficial interest in land trusts and controlling interests in real estate entities are now taxable under the Real Estate Transfer Tax

January
2005
Illinois Law Update
Page 14
The Department of Revenue recently adopted amendments to the Real Estate Transfer Tax, 86 Ill Adm Code 120. Effective October 13, 2004, the changes affect sections 120.5, 120.10, and 120.20 of the code. 

(Not so) dastardly deeds

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
January
2005
LawPulse
Page 8
If you spot a mistake in a deed, don't panic. There might just be an easy fix.

Update on Real Estate Tax Law Changes

By James K. Weston
January
2005
Column
Page 44
Here's a summary of some of the many recent changes in real estate taxation.

A better way to fight fraud is under your thumb

By James K. Weston
October
2004
Column
Page 542
Let's amend the notary law to require a thumbprint with the signature.

You, too, can be title insurance agent

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2004
LawPulse
Page 390
Have – or hope to have – an active residential real estate practice? If you're not a title agent already, becoming one might well boost your bottom line.

The Open and Obvious Doctrine and Landowner Liability: The Rule and the Exceptions

By Jennifer E. Simms
July
2004
Article
Page 352
A discussion of the doctrine, its exception, and its applicability to children.

Title work is lawyers’ work

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2004
LawPulse
Page 334
Leading real estate practitioners warn their fellow lawyers not to cede control over title work to realtors.

Watch out for (un)real estate deals

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2004
LawPulse
Page 334
Don't let your clients lead you down the road to a RESPA violation by misstating the price of real estate.

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