Real Estate

Mr. Peterson focuses a significant portion of his practice on real estate issues, handling a wide range of matters, including real estate litigation involving complex legal issues, large commercial properties, and contentious disputes involving multiple parties.

Our real estate practice includes, but is not limited to: purchase and sale disputes, partnership disputes, partition actions, quiet title actions, mortgage and deed of trust disputes, foreclosures, receiverships, contract disputes, construction litigation, environmental matters, easement and boundary disputes, eminent domain and inverse condemnation actions, commercial lease disputes, homeowner association disputes, enforcement of CC&Rs, and title insurance claims.

Sacramento County Planning Commission

During his tenure on the Planning Commission, of which he was the Chairman in 2011, Mr. Peterson was involved with the update of the County General Plan, which affects zoning and development throughout Sacramento County. Important issues he addressed included re-permitting of multiple large mining operations in southeast Sacramento County; addressing implementation of California's new greenhouse gas initiative (AB 32 and SB 375); updating of the Zoning Code to address changes in the Agricultural Element, the conflicts in state and federal law regarding permitting of marijuana related businesses; and permitting several large scale solar power projects in southeast Sacramento County.

Examples of Recent Cases the Firm Has Handled:

  • A title insurance company admitted to failing to disclose a sizable CalTrans easement that affected our client's property. The dispute concerned how much the title insurance had to pay under its policy; but after three appraisals, it had only offered our clients a meager amount. Through mediation, we obtained recovery of the full amount, plus attorney’s fees.
  • A residential developer sued our client, a lumber yard owner, to cancel a long-standing easement for our client to haul products across the developer's property. After our motion established the easement, we obtained a settlement in our client's favor.
  • Our clients were landowners of a property that had been optioned years earlier. Over time, their property had increased in price considerably. The developers who held the option had invested more than one million dollars to obtain entitlements for the property but were weeks late making an option payment. Through mediation and negotiations, we were able to develop a new option plan including substantially-increased option payments and a more favorable purchase price for our client.
  • Our client, a well-known commercial retail developer, entered into CC&Rs with a neighboring retail developer for mutual easements, parking, and other restrictions, an agreement that benefited both properties. When the neighboring developer commenced construction of a building on his property that violated their agreement, we filed suit and obtained a preliminary injunction, halting all further construction.
  • In a highly publicized, politically sensitive case, our client, an appraiser, was accused of preparing a negligent appraisal that caused a local school district to suffer what it claimed was tens of millions of dollars in damages. We successfully negotiated a costs of defense settlement.
  • We represented a very large loan servicing company that was charged by state authorities with multiple counts of fraud and criminal violations. The state moved to shut down our client’s business and seized all of the money in its bank accounts before we appeared in the case. We identified insurance coverage which resulted in a full defense for our client, and then pursued an aggressive litigation plan that ultimately resulted in a very favorable settlement.

Transactional Services

Through our litigation practice we have seen the potentially devastating effects of poorly-negotiated or drafted real estate contracts. Drawing on what we have learned resolving these disputes, we review and prepare easement and boundary agreements, leases, purchase and sale agreements, and CC&Rs that minimize the risk of future litigation and protect the interests of our clients.