Role of a Real Estate Lawyer Know Their Role When Buying or Selling a Home & How to Hire a Criminal Defence Lawyer

Role of a Real Estate lawyer

First your lawyer will send you a letter outlining what documentation he or she may need from you. Since you will likely be paying at least $1300 plus for legal services, I think it’s important that you know what your lawyer will be doing for you! Below is some detailed information on the role of a real estate lawyer and on what you need to do when working with your lawyer and securing a mortgage. Don’t wait to higher a lawyer just before you taking position of your new purchase, make sure you interview them way before your closing date.

Your Real Estate lawyer should advise you what expenses you’re likely to incur with respect to the closing procedures, including:

Land Transfer Tax
disbursements
legal fees
property tax

If you’ve bought a new home from a builder, the Real Estate lawyer can give you an educated estimate as to how much you should budget for “hidden charges” such as:

Ontario New Home Warranty Enrolment Fee
Hydro and Water meter installation charges
Fencing charges
Grading Deposit charges
many others

If all the conditions in the Agreement have been met and the Offer is firm, the lawyer proceeds to investigate the title to the property. Initials searches include:

utility searches
property tax searches
building, zoning and planning searches
registered title searches

Letters are sent by your lawyer:

to all municipal or regional utility departments to confirm that there are no arrears or outstanding charges
to ensure there are no conditional sales contracts, easements or unregistered agreements, liens
to discover other encumbrances affecting the property or equipment being left by the Seller

Easements are a big issue and cases are always being written up in the newspapers and real estate journals, about buyers who didn’t realize they weren’t allowed to put up fencing or create a parking space because the property survey they were working from didn’t actually show the City’s rights to access the property. Your lawyer’s job is to make sure all this is disclosed to you. Your lawyer will also advise the utility departments of your name and the scheduled closing date, and request that final meter readings be done on the closing date so the final bills can be sent to the Seller.

A Tax Certificate is requested by your solicitor to verify the amount of the current year’s taxes and to ask about any arrears and outstanding charges for taxes. Your lawyer will also write to the Building and Zoning Department to get the full particulars of zoning by-laws and restrictions and permitted uses (so you’ll know if you’re allowed to operate a business from your home or build a huge deck, for example). It’s important that you send your lawyer a copy of the survey for the property as soon as possible – if the Seller has a survey, I’ll get it for you if it’s not already included in the offer documents. If no survey exists, tell your lawyer so he/she can advise how your interests can be protected through Title Insurance.

A Search of Title to the property is begun in the Land Registry Office to make sure the Seller is the true owner of the property, has the right to sell you the property, and that the property is not subject to any encumbrances, encroachments, easements, liens, agreements or mortgages that were not disclosed in the Agreement or Purchase and Sale. You may have heard of fraud cases where people’s homes were sold out from under them by con artists who had no title to the land! This is where your lawyer really earns his fees. This search has to be completed prior to the Requisition Date (title search date) shown on your Agreement of Purchase and Sale.

Other important functions of your lawyer include:

Carry out a search of Executions in the appropriate Sheriff’s Office to ensure that there are no executions against the prior owners of the property that would affect your title.

Prepare and deliver a letter to the Seller’s lawyer requesting that any items revealed in the initial searches be dealt with on or before closing.

Review the contents of the Mortgage Commitment letter your bank will prepare when you arrange your financing, and consult with you about the results of signing it.

Advise you of any closing-day costs related to mortgage financing when your financial institution provides you with a final Mortgage Commitment Letter.

If your lawyer is also acting on behalf of the financial institution (it often happens), he/she will prepare all necessary documentation for the mortgage and submit this package to the financial institution for approval prior to closing:

– Certify title of the property to the financial institution on closing.

– Advise you about any government programs designed to assist home buyers that would apply to you, including Land Transfer Tax Rebate programs, Ontario Home Ownership Savings Plans, RRSP plans, and CMHC 5% Down Payment information.

– Let your insurance broker know the name, address, phone number and fax number of both your lawyer and of the financial institution providing your mortgage. Your lawyer needs a letter confirming that insurance coverage is in place effective on closing – this is super important because the bank will not advance the $ to close your purchase until they know that you have property insurance.

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How to Hire a Criminal Defence Lawyer

There are certain things that should be taken care of when you consider hiring a criminal defence lawyer. If you are unable to afford the fees of an attorney, the court may appoint a public defence lawyer for you. You will be required to disclose your financial information, and whether you have a job, in which case, the court may ask you to pay a certain amount as fee at the end of the case.

Finding a Criminal Defence Attorney

However, if you do not qualify for a public defender, or else you are looking to hire your own attorney, you need to look for a private criminal defence lawyer. There are several ways to go about it.

One easy way is to ask around your family members, friends and work colleagues. If any of them have hired a criminal defence lawyer, they will be able to provide you with advice for you.

Preparing to Meet a Criminal Defence Lawyer

Once you have the name of a criminal lawyer or two, you should set up a meeting to accomplish the following things:

· Discuss the available options and strategy for your case

· Learn about the background of the attorney

· Determine if the lawyer is able enough to be hired for handling your case

It will be better to take the following documents to help you with your case.

· Any paperwork that deals with the charges levelled against you and your next court appearance

· The police report, if you have a copy

· Your bail papers

· Any other paperwork you received from the police

This paperwork comes as a help to the lawyer to know your situation better.

You, too, should be ready to ask certain questions to ask the attorney. Some good topics to cover include:

· How long the lawyer has worked in criminal defence

· How much experience does the lawyer has in the specific charges that you are facing

· How well is the prosecutor trying your case known to the lawyer and other courthouse personnel

· What is the recommended strategy of the lawyer

· How much will be the cost to be borne by you in legal fees and related expenses

Meeting with a Criminal Attorney

On your first arrival, you should let the criminal lawyer ask you questions. The lawyer should ask you about the exact charges you are facing and the available evidences. You should stop yourself to blurt out your version of events. Follow carefully what the lawyer said and answer the questions he or she asked. Never hold back information related to the charges.

Choosing a Criminal Defence Lawyer

The final step for you will be to select a criminal lawyer to represent you. If you have met with one, but the lawyer fulfils all your requirements, you can make a snap decision. However, with two or more, get the name and contact information of some of their previous clients.

Contact these clients and get their feedback. What qualities of the attorney they liked about? What did they dislike? Will they hire the lawyer again when the need arises?

The final component of your decision is your gut feeling. Which one seemed more trustworthy? With whom you felt more comfortable? Who earned your confidence more?

The answers to these questions should help you to find the best criminal attorney for you. You are now in a better position to brave the criminal justice system with an advocate by your side.

Tacopina Seigel & Turano, P.C. is a law firm based in Manhattan that specializes in criminal defense and civil litigation by some of the best New York criminal lawyer.

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