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Attorney Ben Proto - The Musings of a Mad Lawyer

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Commercial Real Estate Transactions in Connecticut

There are a number of differences between commercial and residential real estate transactions. Whereas residential real estate is purchased by individuals for personal use, commercial real estate, due to the liability risks associated with its ownership, is usually purchased by entities for business purposes. There are a number of issues to consider when conducting commercial real estate transactions in Connecticut, including:

  1. Title Issues - During the title review process, the condition of the title to be transferred from the seller to the buyer must be examined for exceptions. Any exceptions discovered, which can include encumbrances, reservations, and limitations, must be thoroughly analyzed and researched before moving ahead with the transaction.  
  2. Survey Issues - An ALTA survey is a detailed survey performed by a licensed surveyor, prepared in accordance with standards specified by the American Land Title Association.
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Sunday, November 12, 2017

Connecticut Foreclosure Basics

Foreclosure is a legal process in which a lender takes steps to recover the balance of a loan via the forced sale of an asset used as the collateral for a loan. Connecticut has two versions of judicial foreclosure: strict foreclosure and foreclosure by sale. With strict foreclosure, the property secured by the mortgage is redeemed by the lender, while foreclosure by sale involves the sale of the property to pay off the outstanding loan amount. Below is an overview of the foreclosure process in Connecticut.
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Friday, September 29, 2017

An Overview of Business Entity Formation in Connecticut

Determining how to legally structure your business is an important decision. All businesses are different, and one entity type may be more appropriate than another depending on the factors involved. Issues such as an organization’s financial health and the nature of activities the business engages in are helpful in determining the appropriate entity type.
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Monday, August 21, 2017

Rights and Responsibilities of Landlords and Tenants in Connecticut

Connecticut statutorily defines the rights and responsibilities of both landlords and tenants. Unfortunately, landlords and tenants sometimes fail to meet their legal obligations. When such situations occur, legal intervention is often necessary. Below is an overview of the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants in Connecticut.  

Connecticut Tenant Responsibilities 

Connecticut tenants are responsible for the following:

  • The timely payment of rent. If a tenant fails to pay his or her rent on time, the landlord may initiate the eviction process;
  • Keeping the property and surrounding areas clean and in good condition; 
  • Keeping noise levels to a minimum so as not to disturb neighbors;
  • Repairing damage to the apartment caused by the tenant or his or her guests;
  • Informing the landlord of any major damage to the property;
  • Informing the landlord of the need for repairs to the property;
  • Giving the landlord permission to enter the property at a reasonably agreed upon time to make inspections or repairs;

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Monday, July 17, 2017

Real Estate Loan Modification in Connecticut

For homeowners in Connecticut, the consequences of failing to make one’s monthly mortgage payment can be devastating. With results ranging from foreclosure to bankruptcy, homeowners faced with such situations often wish that there was some way to make their mortgage payments more affordable. Fortunately, a program designed to avoid these outcomes is available to qualifying homeowners in Connecticut. This program, known as loan modification, allows debtors to remain in their homes while getting back on track financially. A loan modification is a change to an existing loan that results in affordable monthly payments.
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Sunday, June 25, 2017

Breaking a Real Estate Contract in Connecticut

Anyone who breaks a real estate contract without a legally sufficient reason for doing so runs the risk of being sued for breach of contract. However, most real estate contracts contain provisions, known as contingencies, which allow a party to terminate a real estate agreement under certain conditions. Below are some of the most common real estate contract contingencies.

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

You Can Fight City Hall

I recently had the privilege to represent a group of people in Stratford, CT who had sought a referendum on an issue that the Stratford Town Council had approved, to sell the Town’s Water Pollution Control Authority assets to the Greater New Haven Water Pollution Control Authority, and for Stratford to become a member of the GNHWPCA. Many citizens opposed this plan. The Plaintiffs, with the help of many others, collected over 6,500 signatures in 26 days utilizing the right of Referendum Process of the Stratford Town Charter.

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Monday, February 9, 2015

Who Pays When Someone Falls on the Ice or Snow Covered Sidewalk?

Mother nature has once again decided to remind of us what a true—eh, mmm, how can I say this --- not so nice lady she can be, by dumping more snow and ice on our streets, driveways, yards and sidewalks. It’s those pesky snow and ice covered sidewalks that send people flying and falling and getting hurt that cause so many problems and light up lawyers’ eyes.

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

How to Appeal your Property Tax Assessment

It’s that time again, local property tax assessments. Many communities saw a decrease in property values, which will mean, in many cases, an increase in the mill rate.

Connecticut assesses property, for property tax purposes, at 70% of fair market value, as determined by the tax assessor. By way of example, if the tax assessor determines that your property has a fair market value of $250,000.00 the assessment for property taxes would be $175,000.00 ($250,000.00 x 70%). The mil rate, which is set by the local legislative body, would then be applied to the assessed value, in this example $175,000.00. Assuming the mil rate is 30 mils, the property assessed at $175,000.00 would pay an annual real property tax of $5,250.00 ($175,000.00 x .030).

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| Phone: 203.378.9595

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