Delmar, NY asked in Real Estate Law for Pennsylvania

Q: Is there a statute that covers buyer delays in a PA real estate transaction due to COVID-19 or any national emergency?

Seller will not extend closing date and is threatening legal action. Delay is due to a credit supplement needed, but it has been delayed due to COVID-19 and businesses working from home and with minimal staff.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall
  • Norristown, PA
  • Licensed in Pennsylvania

A: Forget statutes and look to the terms of your real estate contract. Is there a clause within (and usually it's one that no one bothers to read) that accounts for circumstances beyond anyone's control? These are known as "force majeure" clauses. Read your contract, and talk to your realtor. It may allow for you to delay dates, and at the very least could allow you to get out of the contract and recoup any deposits. If you threaten to pull out of the deal and the seller doesn't want that, then I suspect he/she will work with you.

Best of luck to you.

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