CRE Insider Blog
Welcome to the CRE Insider Blog, a source of info and insights from First American’s leading real estate experts.

Recent Posts by Mike Berey

Senior Underwriting Counsel First American Title Insurance Company; formerly Chief Underwriting Counsel (New York) and Senior Vice-President, First American Title Insurance Company; Fellow, American College of Mortgage Attorneys; Member, American College of Real Estate Lawyers; Member, Executive Committees of NYSBA’s Real Property Law Section (2000 – 2014) and the New York State Land Title Association; Chairperson, Task Force on Electronic Recording and Webmaster, NYSBA Real Property Law Section (2000-2014); Chairperson, Law Committee (2010-2013) and President (August 2013 – September 2014) New York State Land Title Association; Recipient of NYSBA Real Property Law Section’s 2014 Professionalism Award. Boston College Law School, 1976. Frequent lecturer on mortgage recording tax, transfer taxes, transferrable development rights and New York’s Lien Law. Author of “Current Developments”, a summary of real property-related cases and legislation for New York, since 1997. Author of numerous articles including, most recently, “ Step Transaction Doctrine Applied to New York City Transfer Tax”, New York Law Journal (“NYLJ”) June 9, 2015; “A Primer on New York’s Mortgage Recording Tax”, N.Y. Real Property Law Journal (“RPLJ”) Spring/Summer 2015; “New York’s Court of Appeals Rules on the Lien Law”, NYLJ August 6, 2013; and “New York’s Mortgage Tax Partially Securing Multiple Obligations”, RPLJ Spring/Summer 2013. Current Developments and articles are posted at
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NYC Local Laws For Pandemic Upheld

By Mike Berey on February 23, 2021
In a decision dated November 25, 2020, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York upheld the validity of three local laws enacted in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Local Laws are the “Residential harassment law” (Local ...
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Topics: New York laws for pandemic

Lease Surrender’s Liquidated Damages Provision Held Unenforceable

By Mike Berey on February 3, 2021
A lease between the Plaintiff, as landlord, and the Defendant, as tenant, was terminated. Under the Settlement Agreement the Defendant paid the Plaintiff $261,751.73. The Agreement also required the Defendant to make monthly “Surrender Payments” and ...
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Topics: liquidation landlord

New York Amends Laws Governing Powers of Attorney

By Mike Berey on January 13, 2021
On December 15, 2020, New York State amended Title 15 (“Statutory short form and other powers of attorney for financial and estate planning”) of Article 5 of New York State’s General Obligations Law. Chapter 323 of the Laws of 2020 is effective on “the ...
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Topics: power of attorney

Right of First Refusal Not Triggered by a Stock Sale

By Mike Berey on December 8, 2020
A lease to a part of certain property granted the tenant an “option to buy”. Notwithstanding this provision, and a “first option to buy” granted by the lease to a person not a party to this action, the fee owner - lessor’s sole shareholder sold her ...
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Topics: stock sale right of first refusal

Prohibition on Short Term Rentals Upheld

By Mike Berey on June 30, 2020
In 2012, the Plaintiff, the Petitioner on appeal, purchased a single-family residence in the Town of Grand Island, in Erie County, for the purpose of renting it out for periods of less than thirty days. In 2015, the Town enacted Local Law 9 prohibiting ...
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Lost Note Affidavit Did not Establish Ownership of Note

By Mike Berey on January 28, 2020
The amended complaint for the foreclosure of a mortgage stated that the note, which had been assigned to it with the related mortgage, had been “permanently lost, stolen or inadvertently destroyed” but, notwithstanding, the Plaintiff could maintain the ...
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Topics: lost note

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