Our attorneys know Delaware real estate. We work with you to achieve your specific goals. Client focused. Result oriented. Let us partner with you to make your real estate project a success.
A Recognized Leader in Delaware Real Estate Law
Morris James’ Real Estate Group ranks among the leaders in the industry in Delaware, and actively participates in multi-state transactions.
As recognized in Chambers USA, Best Lawyers® and Delaware Today, we provide comprehensive services for real estate purchases and sales, land use and zoning matters, new project creation and development, financing, and real estate disputes.
Who We Serve
We serve the needs of a wide range of clients, including real estate developers and builders, publicly traded corporations, banks and lending institutions, individual investors, and owner-operators of commercial, retail, office, healthcare and industrial real estate.
Our attorneys apply a business mindset with the benefit of litigation experience to your real estate needs. We remain mindful of our clients’ overall objectives, anticipate risk, and help ensure full realization of investment value.
In addition to real estate transactional and litigation matters, Morris James provides legal counsel and representation on related issues, including mergers and acquisitions, bankruptcy, taxation, and estate planning.
Real estate law is a broad area of practice. With a team of 14 real estate attorneys working across six offices in Delaware, we can match clients with a real estate lawyer who is experienced with their specific needs. Having the resources of a large team allows us to collaborate more effectively, finding solutions to complex legal challenges. This broad depth of experience — as well as a proven track record of success in court — makes Morris James one of the premier firms for Delaware's most prominent property developers.
Our team includes skilled lawyers for all types of commercial properties, including industrial properties, offices, retail space, medical complexes and more. We can provide lender counsel and legal representation for mergers and acquisitions, title insurance issues and other matters.
Our attorneys provide assistance in a variety of real estate transactions, from the sale or purchase of a single property to matters involving multi-state transfers and complex financing transactions.
We draft, analyze and review contracts of sale, letters of intent, leases, restrictive covenants, deeds, easements, construction contracts, asset/stock purchase agreements, merger documents, neighborhood and condominium association agreements, and all other types of real estate related documents. We also routinely provide state law and bankruptcy opinions required for large, complex transactions.
We are also licensed agents for the top national title insurance companies. Importantly, Delaware law requires that attorneys conduct all real estate closings, and all state licensed title agents are members of the Delaware Bar.
Real Estate Disputes
When disputes arise, our attorneys attempt to achieve a constructive result without resorting to litigation. We manage all aspects of the resolution process, including mediation, early dismissal, and workable settlements.
However, should the need arise, we are prepared to represent our clients’ interests before federal, state and local agencies, all Delaware courts, as well as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers.
Complete Project Management Solutions
Morris James is equipped to provide all legal assistance necessary throughout the lifecycle of a project. We emphasize the value of the long-term relationships we form with our clients. At different stages of development, a project’s legal needs will change. By getting to know our clients’ priorities, we provide more proactive service and more focused advice. Our attitude is client-centric, and our approach is top-down — we always begin by establishing key goals and then dedicating the resources needed to achieving them.
Residential Real Estate
For most homeowners, their home represents a significant investment. In fact, for most individuals, it is the single largest investment they will make. At Morris James, we understand that purchasing a residential property – whether it is a condominium unit, townhouse, single-family residence or vacation home – is a significant financial decision and can be a deeply emotional choice.
Residential real estate is where many Delaware residents raise their families, build memories and live their lives. Our offices in Georgetown and Rehoboth Beach can support our clients in residential real estate transactions.
For assistance closing on a house, resolving land disputes, estate planning, bankruptcy or any other real estate issue, the attorneys at Morris James are dedicated to client support and service.
Recent Real Estate Transactional Matters
Disposition of Real Estate Assets for Fortune 100 Company – Served as national coordinating counsel for disposition of 43 industrial plant sites to a subsidiary corporation as part of business division spin-off
Commercial Refinance/Workout – Represented a landowner/developer in a $155,000,000 global refinancing transaction, involving a collateral pool in excess of 400 properties
Loan Portfolio Purchase – Represented real estate investor/developer in the acquisition of a portfolio of 24 commercial properties through an acquisition of a $70,000,000 distressed loan portfolio, and assisted with the development of the properties acquired
HUD Financing – Represented buyer in acquisition, HUD financing, construction loan, contractor disputes and title matters related to new apartment complex
Condominium Formation – Prepared long term ground lease, condominium documents and related materials for construction, leasing, and sale of a new, two-story medical office condominium on top of a third-party existing one-story medical facility
Sales of Properties – Represented owner in the disposition of multiple industrial income producing properties in an integrated transaction aggregating $85,000,000.00; Represented healthcare owner/operator in the disposition of nursing home properties valued at $90,000,000 to REIT, with retention of management and operation responsibilities
Non-Profit - Assisted non-profit corporation in a coordinated effort to establish Delaware’s first National Park in New Castle County, incorporating in excess of 1,000 acres of open space and public parkland.
Legal Opinions – Provided closing opinions as to entity status, contract enforceability, and authority to file bankruptcy petition to support the closing of the assumption of a loan in the original principal amount of over $100,000,000 by a bankruptcy remote Delaware LLC that owns a multi-story office building in California, totaling over 250,000 square feet
Loan Documentation – Drafted documents, assured Truth-in-Lending Act compliance, and structured transaction for non-bank lender seeking to finance residential loans
Mergers and Acquisitions – Represented buyer in multi-million dollar, multi-state acquisitions of propane and petroleum businesses involving transfer and lease of multiple real estate parcels with plant fixtures, and transfer of intangible assets
National Title Work – Reviewed title and issued policy in connection with transfer of office building and parking garage valued in excess of $60,000,000
Workouts – Obtained title to hotel property through negotiated bankruptcy stipulation after borrower’s default under construction loan and initiation of foreclosure proceedings for lender client
Recent Real Estate Litigation Matters
Land Development Litigation - Successfully litigated an appeal in the Delaware Supreme Court affirming the grant of a special use exception on behalf of an international poultry production company
Counsel to Corporate Custodian - Lead real estate counsel for Court of Chancery appointed Custodian in complex corporate §226 action, involving multi-state real estate holdings and related title, environmental and transactional aspects in sale of business by Custodian to third-party multi-national joint venture
Condominium Litigation - Prevailed before the Delaware Court of Chancery in a million-dollar trial on behalf of a condominium developer against 98 unit purchasers
Adverse Possession Litigation – Successfully established claims to adverse possession of property in Sussex County in two trials before the Delaware Court of Chancery
Deed Restrictions – Favorably settled commercial deed restriction lawsuit allowing office high rise owner to substantially expand building uses
National Title Litigation – Defended title to $22,000,000 development project against adverse claim by State of Delaware
Condemnation – Defended state agency in action seeking to put aside prior condemnation of railroad property
- John H. Newcomer, Jr., Partner
- Bruce W. Tigani, Partner
- Robert G. Gibbs, Partner
- Nicholas J. Caggiano, Jr., Partner
- A. Kimberly Hoffman, Partner
- David C. Hutt, Partner
- Cindy L. Szabo, Partner
- Brian M. Ellis, Partner
- Veronica O. Faust, Counsel
- Ross C. Karsnitz, Partner
- Michelle G. Bounds, Associate
- Nicole C. Freedman, Government Relations Advisor
- Tyler J. Maron, Associate
- June 1, 2023
- November 3, 2022
- August 18, 2022
- Law360 Interviews Partner Kimberly Hoffman About Zoning, Affordable Housing and Golf Course RedevelopmentAugust 1, 2022
- June 2, 2022
- February 28, 2022
- February 9, 2022
- February 1, 2022
Latest Blog Posts
Delaware Healthcare Industry Blog
- September 7, 2022
- UPDATE: Morris James LLP Offers Businesses Assistance with Recently Renewed Site Readiness Fund from Delaware Division of Small BusinessAugust 15, 2022
- April 8, 2022
- October 25, 2021
- November 13, 2020
- May 29, 2020
- March 13, 2020
- February 22, 2019
- John H. Newcomer, Jr.Partner
- Bruce W. TiganiPartner
- Robert G. GibbsPartner
- Nicholas J. Caggiano, Jr.Partner
- A. Kimberly HoffmanPartner
- David C. HuttPartner
- Cindy L. SzaboPartner
- Brian M. EllisPartner
- Veronica O. FaustCounsel
- Ross C. KarsnitzPartner
- Michelle G. BoundsAssociate
- Nicole C. FreedmanGovernment Relations Advisor
- Tyler J. MaronAssociate