Lawyers, Answer Questions  & Get Points Log In
Questions Answered by Bruce Martin Broyles
2 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Construction Law for Ohio on
Q: When is a fence contrator responsible for underground damages?

Fence contractor dug through my outside sewer line. Contract states they are not liable for unknown obsticles such as sewer lines. My question lies in do they carry any liablity in that they never informed us of the damage and moreover actually placed the fence post and concrete footing into the... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Jan 14, 2020

The exculpatory clause in the contract must clearly and expressly relieve the fence company from damages for its own negligence. Most likely the clause is not enforceable. In addition, the act of placing the post and pouring concrete may go beyond negligence; may be gross negligence, willful,... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: My father and 2 brothers owned a building where they worked together their whole lives. Two died and other sold to keep

all proceeds of the sale, leaving the children of the other 2 families "out in the cold."

The building sold for almost $215,000. I believe all 3 brothers had a verbal (not a written) agreement to

equally divide the funds once the building was sold. I consulted with a... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Dec 17, 2019

If your father and his brothers worked together in the building, then I must assume that they operated a business. If they operated a business, then they most likely had a partnership. You do not need to have a written agreement to create a partnership.

If you are able to locate any of...
Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Civil Litigation, Collections and Construction Law for Ohio on
Q: We built a home almost 3 yrs ago and the leach field failed within months. It took the builder 2 1/2 yrs to fix can I ??

They still haven't taken care of warranty work they promised to do as recent as 2 months ago up till this last conversation and now that I said we were done with the games he now has sent me a bill for money that was owed at one time but he waived as good will gesture because of how long it... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Dec 16, 2019

Cannot imagine that the work taking 2 1/2 years did not breach at least a portion of the contract. Was it properly permitted and installed by a licensed installer? The emails may establish a waiver. Have you been able to stay in the house? I would imagine that an occupancy permit was not issued.

3 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: Our bylaws indicate the association has the first right to purchase our unit if we decide to sell...can this be enforced
Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Dec 9, 2019

Rights of first refusal are enforceable in Ohio. The important portion of the right of first refusal from your perspective is whether the price is somehow fixed in the agreement. Otherwise, you would simply find an interested purchaser and enter into a contract contingent upon the HOA not... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: land is divide by six siblings one recently passed away and step godson refuse entry into the home
Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Nov 15, 2019

The siblings are co-tenants and each co-tenant has a right to possess the entire property but may not exclude any of the other co-tenants. If one or more co-tenants are using property to the exclusion of others charges for the maintenance and waste can be brought. All are responsible for the... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Elder Law and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: Mothers lease is up end of January, and has been in a nursing home due to not being able to live by herself.

Need to break lease asap. Would this be considered a legal reason?

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Nov 8, 2019

While not a legal reason, the landlord may allow your mother to terminate the lease early. In addition, especially if the Landlord does not have a high number of rental units, you should remind your landlord that he has an obligation to mitigate his damages by finding another tenant to take over... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: is an addendum to original agreement neccessary if closing date is moved a couple days

does the addendum start the 30 day window for the buyer to cancel if i sign it?

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Nov 4, 2019

Depending on how the language of the contract is written. You may not need an addendum. I must assume that you the seller have the right to cancel if sale does not close by a specific date. Or you could simply agree that closing date will be extended to a date certain, with all other dates and... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Contracts for Ohio on
Q: Do I have to pay a restitution fee to a General Contractor who was dropped after a month of negotiating his bid?

Over the past month, I have been in the process of purchasing a house using a Loan company that insisted on using a General Contractor. After negotiating his bids (several rewrites), I finally got him down to somewhat reasonable pricing for the jobs that needed to be done (required by loan... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Oct 31, 2019

There was no contract requiring that you pay him for his time. He did not suggest that he should be compensated for his time during the negotiations. He can file a lawsuit, but he should not be able to prevail.

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Business Law and Contracts for Ohio on
Q: My client never signed our contract, would they be held to the terms of it?

My company conducts estate sales. We take jobs by the value of our clients belongings. Our client received the contract where we state you cannot remove any items from the home as they are deemed for sale. They ignored this & took out items anyway. This was in breach of contract. The client... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Oct 14, 2019

The absence of an executed contract will make it more difficult to collect the full value of the contract but it, by itself, does not render the contract unenforceable. I must assume that you were unaware of the items that were taken before the sale began. Taking items would constitute a material... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Contracts for Ohio on
Q: I'm having a new house being built by Schumacher. the driveway & sidewalk cracked a few days. they want fix it.

I haven't taken possession of my house or even had my first walk through. we have not even made our last payment. I live next door so i watched all of this and informed them. They said they are not going to fix it. Are they responsible to give us what we paid for. we did not pay for a cracked... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Oct 6, 2019

Some cracking in the driveway and sidewalks occur, but it seems odd that it would occur so soon in your concrete. If you still have funds left to pay, I would have the driveway and sidewalk inspected before making any further payment. Make sure you use a reputable expert in concrete issues, not... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Landlord - Tenant and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: My landlord has left a car on my property after repeatedly saying hed move it (in writing). Can i take ownership of it?

Ive live in my house for over 10 months now. Since moving in i have asked my landlord repeatedly and he has agreed repeatedly, to remove his daughters car from my property and he has not. He is now complaining about us not weed-eating around the car, which we decided not to do, the last time we... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Sep 24, 2019

No. You can write a letter; make a copy of it; send it by certified mail or hand deliver it. The letter should state that the issue with the car, give your landlord 30 days to move the car, and if the car is not moved you will begin to escrow your rent. In thirty days, take a copy of the letter... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: can HOA ban a fence unless you have an in-ground pool if there are many houses with fences and no pool

HOA is banning putting up a fence for our backyard claiming that you can only do so if you have an inground pool. Yet there are many houses in the sub-division that do not have in-ground pools but do have fences. In addition, they updated their bylaws online hours after talking to me.

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Sep 11, 2019

A Home Owners Association is governed by Ohio Revised Code Chapter 5312. The Association should have a declaration and by-laws; have regular meetings and elections. The Association must also have guidelines for the use of fences. The guidelines have to be detailed enough as to not be enforced in... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: I was presented with an offer on my property, I countered and the buyers realtor is not relaying anything to my realtor

or her clients. How long can an offer be valid?

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 29, 2019

I believe your counter offer effectively rejected the original offer. Your counteroffer remains open until the deadline you set passes, or you withdraw your counteroffer.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: Developer hasn't conveyed common area. Retention pond walls are becoming weak & need repair Who pays? Developer or Assoc
Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 27, 2019

In discussing common areas you are either discussing a condominium or a home owners association. Either way the answer is most likely found in the declarations. Most likely, the association will be responsible, but the developer still owns a large number of units.

3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Foreclosure for Ohio on
Q: I lived with my fiance for 12 yrs. and he passed away on May 31. His house is in mortgage and they want their money.

I am not able to pay the mortgage due to waiting for opers benefits and for his family's attorney to get everything put into my name. i need to know what i can do before our house is taken from us. Was planning on paying off mortgage once i received his opers benefits.

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 29, 2019

The attorney handling the Estate should contact the mortgage company. The heirs and beneficiaries take the home subject to the mortgage and are allowed to assume the mortgage by continuing to make payments. Once the "family's attorney" transfers the house to you by way of a... Read more »

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: My condo asstn. has been misappropriating funds & or ignoring request for audit info for years. Do I have any recourse?

My condo association has used scare tactics and harassing tactics to squeeze money out of homeowners. Some have filed bankruptcy not not knowing the management company that has been receiving payments for the last 13 years, has been cancelled by the state. Yet they have still used a law firm to... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 16, 2019

The articles of incorporation are often cancelled for failure to pay annual fees. The corporation can have the articles reinstated and ratify the conduct by a shareholder's meeting. As a shareholder, I believe that every owner is a member of the association, you are entitled to receive the... Read more »

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law, Environmental and Insurance Bad Faith for Ohio on
Q: If a neighbor did major work next to your property line to run storm water pipes on to your property should you be told

And to find out the neighbor had been plotting this move for over a year after the head of soil and conservation advised neighbor not to block the watercourse THATS been their for 100+ years so the neighbor gets a permit to put in a WMSC and now we are getting all of the pollutions from the... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 15, 2019

Your neighbor cannot alter the course of the natural flow of water onto your property. The permits and zoning do not determine whether he has a right to adversely effect your property. You have rights that should be enforced through a complaint for trespass and request for mandatory injunctive... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: How is a manufactured home valued for loan purposes if the county has it recorded as real property?

It is on a foundation so the title was surrendered in lieu of a deed. The tax dept says its real estate but the appraiser says its a trailer basically which under values it by about $40,000. How or can we change the way they value the house?

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 11, 2019

once you surrender title the auditor should describe it as real property and you should no longer be taxed as personal property. show this information to the appraiser

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: How does a Vendor enforce a Land Contract when Vendee fails to pay real estate taxes?

Land contract states: "Real estate taxes shall be the responsibility of the Vendee as of the date of the execution of this agreement. Said taxes shall be escrowed and added to the principal and interest payment required hereunder." Vendee has not paid anything toward real estate taxes,... Read more »

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Aug 9, 2019

Ohio has a very specific statute for Land Installment Contracts; R.C. Chapter 5313. If the land installment contract has been in effect for less than 5 years or the purchaser has paid less than 20% of the purchase price, you may proceed by giving a notice of forfeiture. This notice places the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: If we submitted a deposit equal to our monthly rent and signed a year lease does our deposit accrue interest?

Our deposit amount was $1950 and we lived in the house for two years (signed two 1-year leases)

Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles answered on Jul 30, 2019

5321.16 Procedures for security deposits.

(A) Any security deposit in excess of fifty dollars or one month's periodic rent, whichever is greater, shall bear interest on the excess at the rate of five per cent per annum if the tenant remains in possession of the premises for six months...
Read more »

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.