Maryland Contracts Questions & Answers

Q: If a Principal is violating Court Orders, can her POA violate them too on her behalf?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Family Law for Maryland on
Answered on Feb 17, 2019
Mark Oakley's answer
The contempt is against the principal, not the agent, unless the principal is mentally incompetent.

Q: My new commercial lease does not include any terms regarding rent increases. Is there a maximum amount in Maryland?

2 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Answered on Jan 10, 2019
Mark Oakley's answer
No, commercial leases do not have any statutory or regulatory provisions governing them. There are judicially developed rules for interpreting contracts, including a general "reasonableness" standard, however. But you should have a lawyer review the lease to be sure there is no rent adjustment, and to confirm how the lease is automatically renewed and how you can get out of the lease before it is automatically renewed. Without reading the lease, it is impossible to advise you accurately, but...

Q: I paid a contractor for home repair services and he declared bankruptcy. What laws do I cite in an MHIC hearing?

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts and Business Law for Maryland on
Answered on Dec 27, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
You really need to talk to a lawyer. Your question is too broad and general to allow an answer in the space available. I assume you have made a claim against the Guaranty Fund. You need to prove your monetary damages using one of the three formulas allowed under the statute and regulations, and must present proper evidence to prove the claim. That’s what you need help with. The laws and regulations that pertain to the contractor‘s performance are fairly straight forward and well known to...

Q: If a person uses a company to illegally obtain earnings from someone can that constitute fraud and can they be legally?

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Criminal Law and Small Claims for Maryland on
Answered on Dec 7, 2018
Cedulie Renee Laumann's answer
The question is unclear. To analyze possible fraud claims you are highly encouraged to seek legal advice from an attorney specific to your situation.

Q: Buying a car with lien

1 Answer | Asked in Small Claims and Contracts for Maryland on
Answered on Nov 23, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
You get the payoff amount on his loan, and have your bank issue a cashiers check payable to the sellers auto loan company and put the check in an envelope addressed to the lender, and drop it in the mailbox in each other’s presence. Have a second check issued (or cash) to the seller for the rest of the purchase price. The seller hands you the title signed by him on the back, and you take the title to the MVA together with a bill of sale the two of you sign stating the sale price and the...

Q: Can I file suit against the buyer's agent, buyer, and or buyer's lender of my home for breach of contract?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Real Estate Law, Civil Litigation and White Collar Crime for Maryland on
Answered on Nov 22, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
You might have a basis to forfeit the buyer’s deposit based upon misrepresentation. The buyer beached the implied covenant of good faith dealing.

Q: Can I sue myself in Maryland for auto property damage liability? Details below.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Insurance Bad Faith and Insurance Defense for Maryland on
Answered on Nov 8, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
The language has to be in the policy. Demand that your insurance agent provide you with the exact provision that precludes your claim. In my experience, however, insured owners generally cannot recover for their own negligence under their policy, with collision coverage being the only insurance coverage offered to address that type of claim.

Q: I have a contract on a home that has failed well water test for lead and nitrate. The Sellers say that adding one...

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Environmental and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Answered on Oct 19, 2018
Cedulie Renee Laumann's answer
An attorney cannot assess the Seller's obligation without looking at the Contract.

That being said, there is no law that requires a Seller to install a whole house reverse osmosis system to fix well water issues, though the contract may speak to issues of repair and condition. It is not uncommon to treat well water by a water filtration system that covers the house and perhaps a single reverse osmosis system under the kitchen sink. Alternatively, if the lead is coming from certain...

Q: If I have a lifetime warranty and the company changes hands and is reincorporated, is my warranty still valid?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts for Maryland on
Answered on Sep 27, 2018
Joseph D. Allen's answer
Depends on what the contract (warranty) says about if it binds successors in interest.

Q: qualify for a tenant pro bon can u refer senior disaility tenant to a few of them o law firm located Baltimore md

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts, Landlord - Tenant and Criminal Law for Maryland on
Answered on Aug 29, 2018
Cedulie Renee Laumann's answer
The Pro Bono Resource Center and American Bar Association have teemed up to offer a free legal answer resource at the following website:

They may ask a few questions to see if you qualify - if you do, you can ask a volunteer attorney your question.

Additionally, Maryland offers a free "self help" legal clinic in certain District Court locations (such as Baltimore City and Glen Burnie, MD) where volunteers help people fill out...

Q: what is the penalty for holding a subcontractors payment past the 7 day limit

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts for Maryland on
Answered on Aug 29, 2018
Joseph D. Allen's answer
The subcontractor could potentially sue, or claim whatever late fees are called for in the contract.

Q: what is the statue of limitations for employment contracts where compensation is owed?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Employment Law for Maryland on
Answered on Aug 15, 2018
Joseph D. Allen's answer
The Maryland Wage Payment and Collection Law gives you 3 years to sue for unpaid earned wages or overtime. There is the potential (not guaranteed) for punitive damages up to 3 times the unpaid wages. If you truly had an employment contract, that might control whether you have the right to file suit (as opposed to being limited to arbitration). You should contact an employment lawyer to discuss the facts of your situation.

Q: 5 out 6 siblings agreed sale houseand sign a contract. Can investors sue if we change minds?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts for Maryland on
Answered on Jul 31, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
You need to ask Florida counsel. It may also depend on how the property is titled. If all six siblings own as tenants in common, the the five siblings can each sell their one-sixth interest in the property, but not the one-sixth share owned by the one sibling who won’t sell. If owned as joint tenants with right of survivorship, then you cannot sell individual interests in the property. Five out of six cannot sell 100% of the property without unanimous agreement. If you want to force the sale,...

Q: can a lawsuit brought against one LLC be expanded to include several separately formed LLCs?

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Contracts for Maryland on
Answered on Jul 24, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
In general, no. The party suing would have to sue you personally, and survive dismissal based on the debt/claim not being your personal responsibility, and then attempt to "pierce the veil" of your separately owned LLC on the basis that the LLC is a sham and not legitimate, a pretty difficult thing to prove. Generally, corporate and LLC structures will not be pierced except in cases of fraud (such as, you transfer all your personal assets into the name of an LLC simply to put them beyond the...

Q: What can I do if I believe my idea from invention company was stolen?

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Contracts and Patents (Intellectual Property) for Maryland on
Answered on Jul 10, 2018
Kevin E. Flynn's answer
It is very serious to accuse someone of stealing an idea. It does happen but you need to have your facts all lined up.

As your fact pattern did not include that you obtained a patent, you cannot sue for patent infringement. (yet).

You need to take all the relevant documents to an attorney with the right skill sets. Someone will need to sort out whether someone else simply had the same good idea that you did. Happens all the time. Necessity is the mother of invention and...

Q: i signed & sent in my new lease. They tell me it contained a mistake in the increase of rent.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Landlord - Tenant for Maryland on
Answered on Jun 28, 2018
Joseph D. Allen's answer
The answer to this depends in part on what the lease says about when it becomes effective. If they made an offer (sent you the lease document with the rent per month), and you accepted the offer by signing and returning the lease, a binding contract was likely formed. But the lease or accompanying letter (stating how to accept their offer) may contain other language. Now, if the offer/lease referenced an amount that would obviously be a mistake (e.g. $2/mo. instead of $2k/mo.), then a...

Q: Me being a pr do I have the right to inforce a separation agreement from the divorce of my mom

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Divorce for Maryland on
Answered on May 16, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
It depends on the nature of the provision you are enforcing. Agreements relating to sale, transfer or other interests in property can be enforced, as well as judgments and monetary amounts due from unpaid support obligations. Consult a lawyer.

Q: What type of lawyer do I need?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Personal Injury, Civil Litigation and Landlord - Tenant for Maryland on
Answered on May 15, 2018
Thomas Neary's answer
You are probably looking for a personal injury lawyer or a general litigator experienced with dealing with injury claims and insurance companies. The specific legal area for the mold portion is called toxic torts.

Q: Is a promissory note considered under seal? What's the difference in Maryland between private contract vs. promissory?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Civil Litigation and Collections for Maryland on
Answered on May 13, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
It’s only under seal if the word “seal” appears on the signature line. All that does is extend the statuteof limitations for suing in eventod a default from 3 years to 12 years. A promissory note is a contract. It’s a type of contract. It memorializes a monetary debt owed by the promissor to the lender. It is only signed by the person who owes the debt. Generally, it will include an acceleration clause that makes the entire balance due upon the default if any installment payment due...

Q: We settled on the sale of my moms house on 1/2/18. Signed all docs, collected funds and thought that was it.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Answered on Mar 9, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
The tax was imposed against the property in 1985, so you cannot blame the settlement company for the tax. As sellers, it is also your obligation to transfer the property free and clear of all past due taxes and liens, which having failed to do, you are in breach and the buyers can sue to rescind the purchase or demand that you reimburse them for having to pay the tax lien. The buyers also have recourse against their title insurer who wrote the title insurance police, which is on the hook to...

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