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The Role of Land Use Lawyers in Real Estate Development

A land use attorney will have knowledge of many different types of law, including real estate, environmental and administrative law, and constitutional law.  They will also need to understand public policy and local politics.

Advising Clients

Land use lawyers will need to advise their clients on the legal implications of land use regulations in a manner that can be easily explained.  This is not always easy because land use laws that pertain to that individual may include comprehensive plans, land development regulations, development orders, public facility planning, and finance, environmental and community issues, property rights, and other constitutional issues.  A land use lawyer should inform their client about every option available to them so the property owner can make an informed decision.

Assisting Clients with Real Estate Transactions

There are risks associated with buying and selling properties that even seasoned investors may not be aware of.  Especially with buyers, what you intend to do with the property can be filled with hidden pitfalls.  Whether you are buying or selling waterfront properties, inland ranches, developed parcels, or raw land, a land use lawyer can assist you in all aspects of a real estate transaction; from acquisition and permitting, to development and ultimate sale.

Negotiating and Drafting Contracts

The real estate contract is at the heart of a real estate deal and is critically important to both buyers and sellers.  The contract not only locks in the purchase price and timetable, but it also commits the real estate buyer and seller to other conditions too.

A land use lawyer understands the critical importance of knowing all the details of your transaction before negotiations begin on the contract.  They will want to know the goals you want to achieve and the obligations you are willing to accept.  They will also advise you on the risks you should avoid and whether you are being exposed to unnecessary liability.  Once everything is understood, your attorney can negotiate and draft the contract so that it is clearly written, fully protects your rights and interests, and is legally enforceable.

Representing Clients in Zoning Board Hearings

When disputes about land use and zoning arise, legal support can help you protect your property and rights.  Matters relating to land use and zoning can be frustrating and complicated, and a zoning board hearing can be a very tense proceeding.  A land use lawyer can help you create a streamlined plan to obtain all approvals required by state and local governmental agencies. 

Even so, not all hearings may go your way at first.  In these cases, your attorney can help you preserve your ability to competently and thoroughly appeal the decision.  Filing a petition for writ of certiorari with the circuit court is the predominant method of appeals of a quasi-judicial decision in Florida.  The petition is governed by the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure and must be filed within thirty days of “rendition” of the order.

Preparing Applications for Necessary Licenses and Permits

Developing your real estate property could require working with one or more governmental agencies to obtain the necessary licenses and permits.  Each land use project is unique and the type of licenses and permits you might need will vary depending on your location and the intended use of the property.  Applications need to be filled out correctly as small errors could be subject to rejection.  An experienced land use lawyer can be invaluable during this process.

Rob Robinson – Your Land Use Lawyer

I’m Rob Robinson and I opened my own firm so that I could bring my extensive experience in local government and land use issues to serve my clients with the personalized care and attention they deserve.  I can assist you with all of your land use needs, from financing concerns and due diligence, and continuing throughout the project, including the agency permitting process, environmental permitting, subdivision permitting process, public utility concerns, construction, and through the final certificate of occupancy.  I understand your desire to avoid delays and no development is too small for my broad experience.  Please contact my office so we can discuss all of your land use concerns at the nearest availability.

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