Contribute to the Real Estate Law Section Newsletter

All Section Members are invited to contribute to the Newsletter. Please submit articles,
practice pointers, and other contributions in MS word format via e-mail to:

Amy Brimah
Brimah LLP
1888 Sherman St Ste 200
Denver, CO 80203
(720) 305-9920
amy@brimahlaw.com

Y. Melinda Pasquini
Polsinelli PC
1401 Lawrence St Ste 2300 
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 583-8263
mpasquini@polsinelli.com

Brianna Dowling
Land Title Guarantee Company
5975 Greenwood Plaza Blvd #150
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
(303) 331-6340
bdowling@ltgc.com

 

Archive Newsletters


Winter Newsletter

Colorado Bar Association
Winter 2019 Newsletter

In this Issue

EDUCATION

Topical Lunches
Due to the way the dates will fall in January, 2020, the January Maggiano’s Topical Lunch will not be held. So, please enjoy your holidays, and get ready for the lunches to start up again in February, 2020.

Pricing for all Topical Lunches:
Section Members: $25.00
Non-Members: $30.00
Young Lawyer: $20.00
MP3 Recording (Section Member): $15.00
MP3 Recording (Non-Section Member): $20.00

Upcoming CLE Programs:

Colorado Real Estate Practice Series 2020
Seven-week Series
Tuesday nights, January 14 – February 25, 2020, from 5–7:45 p.m.
Live and Webcast Program

Colorado Real Estate Practice is the seminal course for every real estate practitioner in Colorado. Whether a recent bar admittee, real estate professional, paralegal, or an experienced practitioner seeking a refresher, this course is for you. The curriculum is based on the Colorado Real Estate Practice publication (with an update coming in December), an essential guide for real estate attorneys in Colorado.
This course will cover:

  • Overview of real estate practice and malpractice, recognized areas of liability, and specialization
  • Deeds and conveyancing, surveys, and land descriptions
  • Title insurance, purchase and sale contracts, commercial and residential sales, and closings
  • Financing and mortgages
  • Public trustee foreclosures, judicial foreclosures, and quiet title actions
2019 REAL ESTATE SYMPOSIUM HIGHLIGHTS

2019 Real Estate Symposium Recap
By Suzanne Leff, CBA Real Estate Section Chair

Thanks to everyone who came to Vail for the 37th Annual Real Estate Symposium in July! Each year the CBA Real Estate Section works in collaboration with CBA-CLE to produce the annual Symposium. In 2019, the Symposium focused on diversity and inclusiveness in real estate practice and included speakers from around the state, a presentation from Colorado Supreme Court Justice Monica Márquez, and a live performance by dancing bed bugs inspired by the passage of HB19-1328.

The Real Estate Section could not provide this quality programming for the benefit of its members without a few key ingredients: attendees, speakers, sponsors, and, of course, CBA-CLE.

Symposium speakers volunteer their time and talents to create materials and deliver classes that aid our practice and keep us alert to new laws and trends. The 2019 Symposium faculty contributed a wealth of legal knowledge and exemplar presentation skills. Please extend a “thank you” to all of these speakers as you encounter them in your practice:

Keely Ambrose, Esq. Honorable Adam J. Espinosa Jana Persky
Geoffrey Anderson, Esq. Karen Hester, JD, LL.M. Jeremy Schupbach
Jean Arnold, Esq. Kent Jay Levine, Esq. Honorable Jonathan Shamis
Austin T. Chambers, Esq. Joey Lubinski, Esq. Frederick B. Skillern, Esq.
Stephanie Copeland Honorable Monica M. Marquez Lindsay S. Smith, Esq.
Michelle Craig DeVoe, Esq. Sean K. Murphy, Esq. Deanne R. Stodden, Esq.
Brianna Dowling, Esq. Dan Pabon, Esq. Daniel Sweetser, Esq.
Ben Doyle, Esq. J. Marcus Painter, Esq. Kimberly Jackson Thayer, Esq., LL.M.
    Julia T. Waggener, Esq.

Justice Márquez and Karen Hester both focused their talks on diversity and inclusiveness, offering conversation-starting statistics and challenging attendees to examine their biases, whether explicit or implicit. Ms. Hester provided numerous resources in her materials and encouraged people to explore their biases using online tools such as the Harvard Implicit Association Test. The Real Estate Section is committed to keeping this conversation going and taking action in line with the CBA’s Diversity and Inclusivity Action Plan. If you would like to get involved with the Section in support of these efforts, please contact CBA Real Estate Section Liaison Jess Ham at jham@cobar.org.

Following the Symposium, CBA-CLE Program Attorney Bridgett (Shephard) Moore, who applies her CLE program expertise to Symposium planning and execution in addition to assisting the Real Estate Section with its Spring and Fall Update CLEs each year, offered the following stats and comments about the 2019 Symposium:

  • This year we had 407 attendees.
  • Around twenty percent (20%) of attendees were first-time attendees. There was interest in separate programming/track for new lawyers, and that’s something we will consider for 2020.
  • This was the first time we used PollEverywhere.com to engage attendees during breaks. The most popular question answered was “Where did you travel from to attend the Symposium?” Fifty-eight (58) people responded. Attendees who responded were primarily from Denver, Boulder, and Highlands Ranch, but we had attendees from Aspen, Pueblo, Greeley, and even one from Nebraska.
  • There was high praise for the experienced, engaging, and diverse faculty members.
  • Overall, people enjoy having the conference at the Vail Marriott. Next year the spa/gym construction will be complete which will add value for attendees booked at the Marriott.
  • We received positive feedback about supportive sponsors and networking opportunities.

Planning for the 38th Real Estate Symposium is already underway. Save the date for July 16–18, 2020, in Vail. We look forward to seeing you there!

 

Colorado’s New Deed Legislation
By: Dan Sweetser, The Sweetser Law Firm, P.C.

To address the ongoing issues of merger[1] and the recitation in deeds of provisions contained in the unrecorded contract to buy and sell real estate[2], sellers’ misplaced reliance upon the provisions of title company commitments and policies which are contracts with buyers only[3], a seller’s ongoing downstream warranty liability[4], the legal fiction of title companies acting as scriveners for real estate brokers, and a couple of other issues discussed below, the Colorado legislature enacted HB 19-1098, revising the provisions of Sections 38-30-113, 115, and 116, C.R.S. and adding a new Section 38-30-116.5, C.R.S.

If you draft or review deeds, or advise clients regarding title insurance policies, you’ll want to click here to read Dan Sweetser’s article on 2019 statutory changes that will likely affect your practice.

 

Results from the School Supply Drive, 2019:
By: Jean Arnold, Vice Chair of the Real Estate Section Council

Thank you Section Members for your generosity: at the 2019 Symposium, the Real Estate Section of the CBA made a difference in the lives of school children by supporting the Action Center’s Back-to-School Supply Drive. In addition to cash ($350), the Section donated a car-load of school supplies. Below is a picture of the supplies on the loading dock of the Action Center after Vice Chair, Jean Arnold, dropped them off. The Section collected and donated 189 items (and stuffed a lot of the supplies into the 6 backpacks the Section donated). The donated items included the following packages of supplies:

  • Pens – 4
  • Markers – 18
  • Pencils – 20
  • Colored Pencils – 16
  • Crayons – 11
  • Notebooks – 33
  • Rulers – 7
  • Pencil Sharpeners – 3
  • Backpacks – 6
  • Folders – 21
  • Glue – 11
  • Erasers – 4
  • Scissors – 15
  • Sticky Notes – 1
  • Highlighters – 3
  • Notebook Paper – 6
  • Notecards – 6
  • Graph Paper – 2
  • Kleenex – 2
School Supply Drive
CASE LAW UPDATE

FD Interests v. Fairways at Buffalo Run
Colorado Court of Appeals No. 18CA0977
Adams County District Court No. 16CV31316

Please click here for the full opinion from the Colorado Court of Appeals.

In this case, the Colorado Court of Appeals held that the trial court erred in reforming a condominium declaration (the “Declaration”) that was outside of the chain of title. In this case, an entity executed and recorded a Declaration that purported to encumber certain property. However, the signing entity did not own the property to be encumbered at the time that the Declaration was executed and recorded. As such, the Declaration was outside of the chain of title. The trial court acted equitably, and reformed the Declaration by adding the property owner’s name and signature to the Declaration, which effectively brought the Declaration back into the title chain.

In the opinion linked above, the Colorado Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s decision, but determined that the trial court committed harmless error in reforming the Declaration. The Court of Appeals determined that the reformation was not legally necessary, as the failure of the owner to sign the Declaration “did not render title unmarketable or otherwise affect it.”

After reviewing the Colorado Court of Appeals opinion, the members of the Real Estate Section Council became concerned that this published opinion is inconsistent with basic real estate law principles. Specifically, the Court of Appeals decision could have significant implications for Colorado’s race-notice system, which is codified in §38-35-109(1), C.R.S. 2019, and serves as the bedrock for Colorado real estate law. As such, the CBA Amicus Brief Committee voted in favor of authorizing the Real Estate Section Council to file an Amicus Brief in Support of Petition for Writ of Certiorari. The Colorado Supreme Court allowed the Section Council to proceed as amicus curiae, and accepted the Amicus Brief prepared by Jim Meseck, Robin Nolan, and Hannah Riedel on behalf of the Colorado Bar Association.

WHAT ELSE IS NEW?

Update from the Colorado Real Estate Commission:
By: Damian Cox, Cox Law Firm, LLC, and Vice Chairman, Real Estate Commission Forms Committee

In its August meeting, the Colorado Real Estate Commission approved revisions to all of the Listing Contracts, revisions to what was formerly known as the Agreement to Amend/Extend with Broker, and adopted the new Agreement to Revive Contract. At this meeting, the Colorado Real Estate Commission also completed its comprehensive rule review and adopted the new revised rules that will become effective January 1, 2020. Due to changes in some of the rules, the Colorado Real Estate Commission requested revisions to the Brokerage Disclosures. The Colorado Real Estate Commission also requested creation of basic form deeds and two Bills of Sale for use by brokers in transactions that involve personal property. In its October meeting, the Colorado Real Estate Commission adopted the following forms to be used on or after January 1, 2020:

  1. Brokerage Disclosure to Buyer (revised)
  2. Brokerage Disclosure to Seller (revised)
  3. Brokerage Disclosure to Tenant (revised)
  4. Brokerage Disclosure to Landlord (revised)
  5. Warranty Deed (new)
  6. Special Warranty Deed (new)
  7. Bargain and Sale Deed (new)
  8. Quit Claim Deed (new)
  9. Bill of Sale (Contract to Buy and Sell Real Estate) (new)
  10. Bill of Sale (Personal Property Agreement) (new)

A complete list and links to all the newly approved forms that become effective January 1, 2020 can be found on the Division of Real Estate's website under Real Estate Contracts & Forms, or by clicking here.

 

Title Standards: Proposed New Comment to Title Standard 5.2.2
Provided by Geoff Anderson, Sweetbaum Sands Anderson PC, and Member of the Title Standards Committee

Below is the Proposed New Comment to Title Standard 5.2.2, which was approved by the Title Standards Committee on December 3, 2019 and is effective immediately:

(2) Effective January 1, 2010, the use of a statutory form power of attorney is authorized. §15-14-741, C.R.S. A document substantially in the form described grants broad general authority as outlined in the “Uniform Power of Attorney Act”, part 7 of article 14 of title 15, C.R.S., unless such authority is specifically declared not to be included within that particular power of attorney. Under the Act, if real property is included in the agent’s authority using the statutory form, the agent may exercise the acts enumerated in §15-14-727, C.R.S., with respect to real property of the principal, including executing contracts and deeds. The Act supplements Colorado law existing prior to January 1, 2010, that required either an unlimited grant of authority (as in Problem A) or a specifically defined grant of authority (as in Problem B) to deal with real property. When reviewing a power of attorney affecting title to real property executed after January 1, 2010, and substantially in the form described in the Act, the review should include: (a) the scope of authority described in the Act, (b) statutory limitations on powers not expressly granted, and (c) any limitations stated in the power of attorney.

GET INVOLVED WITH THE REAL ESTATE SECTION!

Attorneys from outside of the Front Range needed!
The Colorado Real Estate Section Council (RESC) is looking for attorneys located outside the front range in Colorado. Involvement would entail the following:

  1. Help identify future RESC issues of specific concern in your local district;
  2. Help serve as a contact for communicating RESC-identified items of interest in your local district;
  3. Helping identify attorneys in local districts that would be interested in serving as members on the RESC, or possible local liaisons.

If you are interested in being involved with RESC regarding any of these matters, or have any questions or recommendations regarding the above, please call and/or email Doug Tueller and/or Carisa Franck — admin@tuellerlaw.com, dtueller@tuellergibbs.com, 970-728-5775.

 

Real Estate Section Ambassadors
The Real Estate Section is seeking Ambassadors to help welcome newcomers to our Section and to strengthen our real estate practice community. Real Estate Section Ambassadors will serve as informal mentors to new or transitioning attorneys who are interested in developing a real estate-focused practice by reaching out to new members at Section events to ensure that they feel included and encouraged to participate. Anyone interested in becoming an Ambassador should contact Jess Ham at jham@cobar.org.

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES

Volunteer Opportunities through the Colorado Lawyers Committee:
If you are looking for a way to donate your time and expertise this Spring, why not consider volunteering with the Colorado Lawyers Committee? Please click here to view a list of upcoming CLC Volunteer Opportunities and events through the spring of 2020.  Here you’ll find great opportunities to network, use your lawyering skills, and make a difference!

Real Estate Council Meeting Minutes

The minutes of the meetings of the Council from June 18, 2019, August 20, 2019, September 17, 2019, and October 15, 2019, can be viewed by clicking on the respective links. Section Council meeting minutes from previous meetings can also be viewed on the Section’s website: cobar.org/For-Members/CBA-Sections/Real-Estate-Law

Executive Council Roster
OFFICERS
CHAIR VICE-CHAIR
Suzanne M. Leff
Winzenburg Leff Purvis & Payne LLP
8020 Shaffer Pkwy Ste 300
Littleton, CO 80127
(303) 863-1870
sleff@wlpplaw.com
Jean C. Arnold
Arnold & Arnold LLP
7691 Shaffer Parkway Ste A
Littleton, CO 80127
(720) 962-6010
jeanarnold@arnoldarnold.com
SECRETARY BOARD OF GOVERNORS REP
Y. Melinda Pasquini
Polsinelli PC
1401 Lawrence St Ste 2300
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 583-8263
mpasquini@polsinelli.com
Katy J. Dunn 
Forest City Stapleton 
7351 E 29th Ave 
Denver, CO 80238 
(303) 382-1800 
kdunn@forestcity.net
COUNCIL
Adam Aldrich
Aldrich Legal, LLC
2701 Lawrence Street, Ste 109
Denver, CO 80205
Amy Brimah
Brimah LLP
1888 Sherman Street Ste. 200
Denver, CO 80203
(720) 305-9920
amy@brimahlaw.com
Brianna Dowling
Land Title Guarantee Company
5975 Greenwood Plaza Blvd.
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
(303) 331-6340
bdowling@ltgc.com
Erin Clark
Urban Land Conservancy
1600 Downing St., Ste. 300
Denver, CO 80218
(303) 699-0317
eclark@urbanlandc.org
Robyn W. Kube
Dietze & Davis PC
2060 Broadway Ste. 400
Boulder, CO 80302
(303) 447-1375
robkube@dietzedavis.com
Ron Jung
Jung & Associates PC
1942 Broadway #314
Boulder, CO 80302
(303) 339-0016
ron@legalrealty.com
Jim Meseck
White & Steele PC
600 17th Street #600N
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 296-2828
jmeseck@wsteele.com
Amy M. Mowry
Jost Energy Law, P.C.
555 17th Street, Ste 975
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 642-0407
amowry@justenergylaw.com
Bryan Schwartz
Quintess Collection
11101 W. 120th Ave. #300
Broomfield, CO 80021
(720) 887-3275
bschwartz@clubholdings.com
Robin Nolan
Spencer Fane LLP
1700 Lincoln Street #2000
Denver, CO 80203
(303) 839-3838
RNolan@SpencerFane.com
Jeremy Syz
Holland & Hart LLP
1800 Broadway, Ste 300
Boulder, CO 80302
(303) 473-2708
jpsyz@hollandandhart.com
Angela Schmitz
Robinson & Henry, P.C. 
900 Castleton Road, Ste 200
Castle Rock, CO 80109-3307
303-688-0944
angie@robinsonandhenry.com
Committee Information

Colorado Bar Association Board of Governors
The Real Estate Section’s Representative on the Board of Governors is Katy Dunn, Forest City Stapleton (kdunn@forestcity.net).

Legislative Policy Committee
Charles Calvin, Calvin Law Firm LLC (charles.calvin@cdcalvinlaw.com) currently serves as the Real Estate Section’s liaison to the Legislative Policy Committee.

Title Standards Committee
Geoffrey P. Anderson, Sweetbaum Sands Anderson PC (ganderson@sweetbaumsands.com), and Catherine Hance, Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP (catherine.hance@dgslaw.com), currently serves as the Real Estate Section’s liaison to the Title Standards Committee.

Trust and Estate Section
Chad Rounds, Kirch Rounds Bowman & Deffenbaugh PC (chadrounds@dwkpc.net), currently serves as the Trust and Estate Section liaison to the Real Estate Section Council.

Real Estate Commission Forms Committee
Geoff Anderson, Sweetbaum Sands Anderson PC (ganderson@sweetbaumsands.com), currently serves as the Real Estate Section’s liaison to the Real Estate Commission Forms Committee.

Ethics Committee
Deanne R. Stodden, Messner Reeves LLP (dstodden@messner.com), is the Colorado Bar Association Ethics Committee liaison to the Section. 

Colorado Association of Realtors
Damian Cox, Cox Law Firm (damian@coxrelaw.com), currently serves at the Real Estate Section’s liaison to the Colorado Association of Realtors.

Regional Liaison
Doug Tueller, Tueller & Gibbs, LLP (dtueller@tuellergibbs.com), currently serves as the Real Estate Section’s Regional Liaison.

Access to Justice
Andy Toft, Andy Toft Attorney at Law (andrewmtoft@andrewmtoft.com), currently serves as the Real Estate Section’s Access to Justice liaison.

CBA Young Lawyers Division
Liz Deline, Montgomery Little & Soran, PC (edeline@montgomerylittle.com), and Diana Mendez, White and Steele, P.C. (diana@realgroupcolorado.com), currently serve as the Real Estate Section’s liaisons to the CBA Young Lawyers Division.

CBA Tax Section
Tyler Murray, Murray & McCarthy Law (tyler@mmcoloradolaw.com), Chris Levkulich, Robinson, Diss and Clowdus, P.C. (clevkulich@lektax.com), currently serve as the Real Estate Section’s CBA Tax Section liaisons.

Additional Information
For additional information regarding the activities and responsibilities of the members of the Real Estate Law Section Council, see the Real Estate Law Section page of the Colorado Bar Association Website available here.

Legal Writing Opportunities

Article Opportunities – Colorado Lawyer
The Real Estate Section encourages all aspiring authors to contribute articles (or even just ideas for articles) for publication in the real estate column of Colorado Lawyer. Articles submitted need to provide a balanced discussion of new, developing or interesting areas relating to the practice of real estate law in Colorado or nationally. Please contact Christopher Bryan, Garfield & Hecht, P.C. (cbryan@garfieldhecht.com) for additional information!

Articles, Practice Pointers and Other Contributions Needed for Real Estate Section Newsletter
All members of the Real Estate Section are invited to contribute to the Newsletter. Please submit articles (or article ideas), practice pointers and other contributions to Brianna Dowling (bdowling@ltgc.com).

Request for Input on Real Estate Section Web Page
We are working to improve the Real Estate Section page of the Colorado Bar Association website and need your input and suggestions. Are there links or other information you have expected to find on the page only to have your hopes dashed? Have you discovered aspects of the site that you feel could be more user-friendly or informative? Please email your comments to Amy Sreenen (asreenen@cobar.org). We welcome your suggestions and we will carefully review all of them. View the Section’s website at cobar.org/For-Members/CBA-Sections/Real-Estate-Law.

Colorado Bar Association
UNSUBSCRIBE OR UPDATE EMAIL PREFERENCES: Go to cobar.org/listservs to unsubscribe and update email preferences. If not already logged into the website, you will be prompted to enter your CBA member number and password (originally set to your last name) before being automatically directed to the email preferences form.