Construction Work Did Not Relate to Demolition Work Two Years Earlier, So Intervening Mortgage Had Priority Over Contractor’s Mechanic’s Lien
By Julie N. Nagorski
In a recent unpublished decision, the Minnesota Court of Appeals held that the construction of a building did not relate back to the pre-mortgage clearing of the lot and preparation of the site through demolition. Accordingly, the lender’s interest was higher than the mechanic’s lien of a contractor who contributed to the construction of the condominium.
News and Notes
In a case receiving media attention in the northern Minnesota, Rob Stefonowicz and environmental attorney Peder Larson successfully defended Duluth Public Schools in a lawsuit brought by several citizens who opposed the construction of Duluth’s Western Middle School. The citizen group alleged that the District and the City of Duluth failed to consider potential environmental impacts arising from the construction of the middle school. The court granted summary judgment in favor of the District and the City, dismissing the lawsuit and finding that the potential environmental impacts were appropriately considered and addressed.
When a property owner sought city approvals for re-zoning from a commercial use to allow a high-density residential development, neighboring owners relied on the Larkin Hoffman Real Estate Litigation team of James Susag and Erin Carlson, who helped convince the city that the present zoning is appropriate, resulting in a denial of the applications.
On behalf of a married couple facing potentially-significant liability in connection with a quitclaim deed the couple's daughter delivered upon cancellation of her contract for deed for the property, Julie Nagorski and bankruptcy attorney Thomas Flynn recently obtained a favorable federal court decision. Finding that the couple was not liable for the alleged wrongs, the court dismissed the asserted claims.
The Minnesota Real Estate Journal published an article by Gary Van Cleve, “Property Owner’s Bill of Rights: Don’t Get Taken in a Taking,” in January 2011.
Rob Stefonowicz’s article, “Condemnation Damages: A Property Owner’s Constitutional Right to Just Compensation,” was published in the February 2011 issue of the Minnesota Real Estate Journal.
The ABA’s BusinessLaw publication featured an article authored by Mike Mergens and Julie Perrus of Larkin Hoffman’s land use practice group, entitled “The Case for LEED Certification in the Post-Recession World.”
Mike Mergens has organized, and will co-chair with Rob Stefonowicz, a day-long CLE on eminent domain sponsored by the Hennepin County Bar Association and the Minnesota Eminent Domain Institute ("MEDI"). The seminar will feature speakers from MEDI, including Gary Van Cleve, opposite assistant county attorneys on a wide range of hot issues in eminent domain.
The MS 150 Ride, an annual bike ride from Duluth to the Twin Cities benefitting the Multiple Sclerosis Society, is scheduled to occur on June 10-12, 2011 and Team Leader Gary Van Cleve and Rob
Stefonowicz have been working hard to train, recruit riders, and raise funds.
Meanwhile, Tamara O’Neill Moreland, board member for the March of Dimes, is planning and preparing for the March of Dimes Walk for Babies. To be held on May 1, 2011, this 4-mile walk raises funds to help improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality.
Jessica Rivas was recently selected to serve on the newly-created St. Louis Park Convention and Visitors Bureau Board of Directors.
Tamara O’Neill Moreland was recently invited to join the Minneapolis Club of Zonta International.