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Questions Answered by Thomas C. Valkenet
1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Can a family member of an HOA Board Member serve on an HOA committee?

We plan to require the related board member to recuse themselves from any nominations, voting or appeals of the family member's committee.

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Dec 3, 2020

Yes, unless restricted by the HOA by-laws. The by-laws often have restrictions on who may vote, based on household members. Service as a committeeman is not likely so restricted.

Of course, you folks can do what is appropriate under the circumstances.

3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Can my listing agent sue for additional commission after settlement?
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Dec 3, 2020

The answer will be discerned from the brokerage/agency agreement, the settlement sheet, and your written communications. If the broker's agreement calls for $X, but the disbursement out of settlement was less than $X, then you might owe he delta.

That is just the beginning of the...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Civil Rights, Land Use & Zoning and Landlord - Tenant for Maryland on
Q: Adverse Possession Can You Adverse Possession Two Campuses And And The Whole Two Campuses With Different Buildings.

And And Can The Land Be Just Adverse Possession Regardless Of The Buildings Of The Two Campuses.

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Nov 16, 2020

The question is pretty vague. But the crux of the biscuit is this: An adverse user is entitled to claim only to the extent of his use and possession, and no more. What I gather from your question is an eye toward land owned by a governmental entity. In that case, you may not adversely possess... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Civil Rights, Land Use & Zoning and Landlord - Tenant for Maryland on
Q: Is Adverse Possession And And Squatting Two Different Things And Is Lottering Trespassing Breaken In Entey ( BNE )

The Same As Or As In Squatting Or Adverse Possession

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Nov 13, 2020

Squatting is simple trespass- one is residing where they have to legal or titled right. Adverse possession is a cause of action. One asserting the cause of action in court must make certain proof in order to persuade a court to award legal title.

A squatter has no rights, but may, at some...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Collections for Maryland on
Q: We would like to know what are options are in removing the lien from our home in Harford County in Maryland.

In 2008 my home had a lien put against it due to a credit card debt with Citibank. In 2017, I tried to show a bank that I paid off the debt but Citibank has no record of the account. I was still able to get a loan despite the lien but in the future this will still be a problem especially if I... Read more »

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Oct 29, 2020

A lien arising from a judgment lives 12 years, and can be renewed for another 12 years. How it was created is found in the court's file. You may visit the clerk's office to review the file, yourself. You might as well obtain a copy as any lawyer you consult will need a complete copy of... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: If a property is abandoned/vacant how can I go about obtaining that property? What steps would I need to take.
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Oct 22, 2020

Property is not truly "abandoned." It may be vacant, but it is still subject to municipal taxes. When left unpaid, the property is likely up for tax sale. The redemption laws might give you a way to obtain an interest in the property.

And if property is vacant, you are certainly...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Maryland on
Q: My father died in the state of Maryland without a will. What steps do I take to sell his house?

His fiancé still lives in the house, but I am his next of kin

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Oct 19, 2020

When one dies, ownership of his things passes to his Estate. That Estate is controlled by a Personal Representative. You must ask the court to appoint you as P.R. Only then will you have authority to administer the house.

You might also discuss with the fiance whether she wishes to...
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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: In cases of multiple owners of a property, does majority rule on questions of selling, renting, etc?

Also, would a majority ownership share rule?

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Sep 21, 2020

No. Unless there is a side agreement that describes such a voting system, every title owner has equal say in how the property is disposed of. That is the tricky part about having co-owners.

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: want to know about a land installment contract
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Aug 4, 2020

They are a thing. But to receive a meaningful response, you should narrow your question. They are complicated, both legally and practically.

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Where can I get a quiet title
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jul 30, 2020

You obtain the relief you want by negotiation with others, resulting in a title document that gets recorded in the land records, or you go to court and obtain a judgment that can also be recorded in the land records. The term "quiet title" includes many things, much as the word... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: I want to give a home that I own (no mortgage) to a friend. How do I do that? Are there any tax implications?
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jul 27, 2020

Title transfers trigger many payment obligations, some of which are "taxes." When you make the transfer also determines what is due, and when. For instance, you can transfer now, you can make a conditional transfer (a life estate for you or others), or you can promise a transfer at a... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: My sister and I have Joint Tenancy and co-own a townhouse; How do we calculate her investment?

I have been paying all expenses for the property for the past five years and we secured a mortgage ten years ago. My sister now wants me to purchase her share of the property. How can I determine how to work this out since she has a “fixed” price in mind that does not match your investment?

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jul 27, 2020

Where expenses of ownership are not equally shared, there is a broad range of negotiation possible. First, you must make the calculations concrete. Gather the facts and documents. Your co-owner can review the data with a financial or legal advisor. Absent a negotiated agreement on the proceeds of... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: What specific MD law requires addendum to a Real Estate contract to change my name from individual to my family trust
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jul 13, 2020

It is not a specific law in the code, it is the principle that a contract must identify the real party in interest. Your contract does or does not have assignment language. Beware, not all contracts are assignable. If yours has the language, it can be assigned.

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Uncle owns 1/2 of condo in ocean cityMD, he wants to sell. Property has been paid for by him, and abondoned for 2yrs.

Made several attempts to contact other owner and nothing. Other guy owes $50,000 in back pay. What can we do?

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jul 9, 2020

It is best to obtain a judgment for contribution before the partition action. Many judges take the position that contribution may be limited to the proceeds of the sale, so if the partition sale doesn't net enough to pay you in full, tough luck.

But a final money judgment means the...
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2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: In maryland can my brothers wife ( pending divorce). Take the home of his deceased parents?

My aunt and uncle raised me. And have one biological son. My uncle died 2003 my aunt 2016. I was never legally adopted. My cousin( their son). Wants to sign their property over to me. Him and his wife are getting a divorce. She has threatened to take half of his deceased parents home. They do have... Read more »

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jun 22, 2020

You and your cousin do not presently own the property. It is property of the estate for the second of your Aunt or Uncle. If you name, and the name of your cousin was not already on the deed, only a Personal Representative of the estate can pass title of the house. And if your cousin was never on... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Probate and Estate Planning for Maryland on
Q: As personal representative of closed estate should l sell house even if 3 heirs want to keep house in family?

There are 6 heirs. There is no more money to pay taxes, repairs etc. 3 heirs want to stop sale. I want to sell asap as is

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on May 1, 2020

If the house is still in the name of the decedent, then the Estate is not yet closed. But the Personal Representative has broad powers to administer the assets of the Estate and make distributions according to the Will or laws that apply when there is no Will. If the house must be sold, then... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Maryland on
Q: There is a 10 ft driveway between me and my neighbor but my neighbor he is saying this is his area

In my property on the right side there is a 10 ft driveway and also pipe line at the beginning of this 10 ft area this water pipe belongs to my house and it’s on the survey, but now a days my neighbor is using the area as a parking lot for his cars, when I talked to him he said this 10 ft area... Read more »

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Apr 30, 2020

Hire a survey! The answer to your questions lies in what the survey shows, after the surveyor reviews the deeds and record plats. If there continues to be a dispute it is possible that the cost and expense of resolving the issue can be shifted to your title insurance company, if the claim is deemed... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Landlord - Tenant and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Can a tenant legally remain in a property that is being sold?

I am in the process of buying a house. The house is currently occupied by tenants. The tenants were given notice of the home being sold by the sellers on April 1st, giving them 30 days to move out. The tenant refused to let our inspector inside the house due to COVID-19 risk, but agreed that the... Read more »

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Apr 16, 2020

First question: Where is the property located? Some jurisdictions require that you give the tenant a right of first refusal on the sale. They must have the chance to match your last offer. Second Question: has the lease expired? The tenant has rights pursuant to their lease. And my third point is... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law and Estate Planning for Maryland on
Q: Eminent domain What Regards That Government Has To Pay Just Compensation And And You Have To Pay Just compensation

What Regards That You Don't Have To Pay Just Compensation As A LLC / Individual / Private Company Non Profit Company..... As In Thing That Regard Regard Tax Exempt Is It Just As In That Thing That Regard ( Tax Exempt )

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Apr 9, 2020

Eminent domain is subject to the requirements of local statutes and ordinances that provide the payment formula. There are appraisers that deal with condemnation appraisals. And if you and the condemning authority cannot agree, you can take a case to trial in a circuit court where a jury will set... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law and Estate Planning for Maryland on
Q: Can You File For Eminent Domain Regarding Government Property

Can You File Eminent Domain In Regards Regards Government Property .....( International Law )

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Apr 9, 2020

No. Eminent domain is a means by which the government can take land from private citizens to serve some greater public good, subject to due process requirements. There is not a means where private citizens may force take government property. The government must do this voluntarily, ordinarily by... Read more »

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