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    Mark Rowley has extensive experience representing domestic and foreign real estate developers and lending institutions in a variety of real estate matters, including the acquisition and sale of real property, secured lending ...

The Washington State Supreme Court recently held in Edmonson v. Popchoi, 172 W2nd. 272 (2011) that a grantor of a statutory warranty deed cannot summarily settle an adverse title claim but must provide a good faith defense even though there may not be a viable defense for the claim.

In 2006, Kiss sold a parcel of land to Popchoi by statutory warranty deed. By statute, the deed contained the covenant that Kiss would defend Popchoi’s title. Popchoi discovered through a survey that a fence encroached by 165 square feet into the southern part of his new property. The neighbor to the south, Edmondson, sent a letter claiming that property by adverse possession. Popchoi tendered the defense of the claim to Kiss. Kiss conditionally accepted the tender subject however to his right to settle the claim. Kiss said that it would be less expensive to pay damages to Popchoi for the breach of the title covenant than to defend the lawsuit. Kiss’ tender was rejected and Popchoi engaged his own attorney to defend the lawsuit filed by Edmonson.

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We regularly update clients about changes in real estate law and on industry trends. This includes briefing clients on legislative proposals in the federal tax, housing and other legal areas affecting their businesses. Staying current enables you to anticipate and prevent legal problems as well as capitalize on new developments.
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