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Practice Areas > Real Estate & Commercial Litigation

Real Estate & Commercial Litigation

Newman Ferrara's real estate and commercial litigation practice has achieved an unprecedented reputation as one of the preeminent practices of its kind in New York. Our attorneys have significant experience in almost every facet of real estate related disputes. We have handled cases through virtually every type of forum, including state and federal courts, arbitral organizations and other alternative dispute resolution arenas, as well as before administrative agencies and federal and state agencies. We are known for our pragmatic approach, meticulous attention to detail, and simple, yet creative, solutions to complicated problems.

As a measure of our success, the critically-acclaimed treatise, Landlord and Tenant Practice in New York, authored by Lucas A. Ferrara and Daniel Finkelstein of our firm, remains the most comprehensive and widely used guide in the field by practitioners and judges alike. In addition, many of our attorneys hold professorships at accredited New York law schools. We are also frequently called upon to lecture at continuing legal education seminars on the latest trends and developments in real estate law.

Our preeminence is further evidenced by the fact that members of our real estate group continue to be honored for professional excellence. Several are ranked as leading real estate lawyers by New York Super Lawyers.

Landlord/Tenant Litigation

Navigating through the myriad of regulations governing landlord tenant relations in New York can be daunting, as can appearing in proceedings before administrative agencies, courts, or the judiciary. At Newman Ferrara, we recognize the challenges that owners, landlords, property management companies and tenants alike face in legal matters and aggressively represent them, while providing practical and cost-effective advice.

Our expertise includes prosecuting both residential and commercial nonpayment and holdover proceedings, commercial evictions, material lease default litigation and "Yellowstone" cases. We also have significant experience and have achieved unparalleled success in litigating cases on such grounds as owner occupancy, non-primary residence, illegal subletting, and security-deposit disputes. Our extensive knowledge of the rent regulatory laws (including rent-control, rent-stabilization, the J-51 and 421(a) programs, and Mitchell-Lama), coupled with our courtroom acumen, allows us to fashion the most appropriate legal strategy for clients.

Co-op/Condo Litigation

Newman Ferrara's attorneys frequently represent condominium associations, cooperative corporations, and individual tenants in connection with cooperative and condominium litigation. We have successfully handled cases involving nonpayment of maintenance or common charges, illegal subletting, and disagreements over bylaws, house rules and regulations.

Our attorneys zealously advocate on behalf of our clients to resolve their disputes through negotiation and strive to minimize litigation risk. However, when a matter can only be resolved by means of court room litigation, we represent our clients with absolute loyalty and diligence.

Americans with Disabilities and Fair Housing Acts Issues

Newman Ferrara's attorneys have extensive experience litigating cases involving the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and both state and federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) issues. Our attorneys' range of public, private, and legislative backgrounds enables them to alert clients to potential ADA and related accessibility issues. In addition to general defense and preventive representation for individuals who own or manage all forms of housing, we work with owners and developers on issues of physical accessibility.

At Newman Ferrara, our team has the depth of knowledge and experience to provide a comprehensive response to our clients' needs.

Zoning Issues

Getting a development project entitled, permitted, financed, and built often requires navigation through the complex layers of federal, state, county, and local regulatory schemes. Newman Ferrara's attorneys have been instrumental in obtaining regulatory approvals and permits for numerous projects in the metropolitan New York area. We provide strategic legal guidance in securing project support. Our attorneys also review project plans and have appeared before various boards and agencies on behalf of clients seeking zoning changes and approvals for subdivisions, special permits, and site plans. At Newman Ferrara, we serve in litigation and consulting capacities on behalf of our diverse client base.

Construction/Development Issues

Our real estate attorneys advise numerous construction industry clients, including general contractors and sub-contractors, developers, owners, and lenders, on a wide variety of construction and development litigation matters. We handle cases ranging from straightforward payment disputes to highly complex matters involving substantial defects in commercial structures.

Commercial Real Estate Disputes

Commercial disputes involving real estate can involve significant complications and expense. At Newman Ferrara, our team provides experienced legal representation for small and medium-sized businesses and commercial real estate clients in disputes involving leases, purchase and license agreements, and other contractual matters. We also have extensive experience handling commercial real estate disputes for a large roster of regional developers.

Contract Disputes

Our real estate litigation practice spans the breadth of contractual issues. Newman Ferrara's attorneys have represented clients in business disputes, dissolution of LLCs and partnerships, commercial leases, and brokerage disputes. We also frequently advise clients on such issues as whether to purchase a property or enter into or renew a commercial lease, and review questions regarding the enforceability of lease clauses and defaults.

Loft Law

Originally passed in 1982, Article 7-C of the Multiple Dwelling Law (the "Loft Law") provides a mechanism for legalizing commercial and industrial lofts in New York City that had been illegally converted in the early 1980s to residential use. On June 21, 2011, the Loft Law was substantially amended adding to the number of buildings covered by the original Law.

Newman Ferrara's attorneys represent clients in all aspects of the Loft Law. Our attorneys represent building owners in loft conversions and loft board registration for buildings, including the preparation of a narrative statement and appearances before the Board of Standards and Appeals, the New York City Loft Board, and the Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings. In conjunction with loft legalization, we represent owners in applications for rent increases.

Mortgage Foreclosure

From simple to complex foreclosures, Newman Ferrara's attorneys have the sophistication and experience to assist with all aspects of residential and commercial foreclosures. Our lawyers have successfully represented banks and other lenders and borrowers in foreclosure litigation. We handle cases involving mezzanine loans, major commercial properties, and multiple liens. We have also assisted our lender clients in liquidating apartment, office and industrial complexes, development projects, and residential properties ranging from small condominium and cooperative units to more sizable estates.

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