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“With little to no revenue at many locations, retail debtors have found it difficult during the COVID-19 pandemic to comply with Bankruptcy Code Section 365(d)(3)’s requirement that a debtor timely perform post-petition lease obligations while it decides whether to assume or reject a lease. However, given the pandemic’s lasting impact, and related governmental orders that have affected operations, revenues, and the ability to pay rent, retail debtors have considered legal strategies for obtaining, over the objections of landlords, extensions of the initial 60-day rent suspension already afforded by Section 365(d)(3). While a few retail debtors have been successful, one was not in In re CEC Entertainment.”

To read the full article written by colleages Patrick J. PotterPatrick E. FitzmauriceBrian L. Beckerman, and Kwame O. Akuffo click here.

Source: Journal of Bankruptcy Law

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In “Uniwest And Virginia’s Anti-Indemnification Statute: The Trap For The Unwary Should Be Closed” in the pages of Virginia Lawyer, colleague Jamie Bobotek recently examined why it is time for Virginia’s General Assembly to correct the uncertainty created by its anti-indemnification statute’s ambiguous language.

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In the Spring 2021 issue of AFIRE Summit Journal, Pillsbury New York-based Real Estate partner Andrew Weiner discusses the Corporate Transparency Act and disclosure requirements for non-U.S. based investors. Summit Journal is the official publication of AFIRE, the national association for international real estate investors focused on commercial property in the U.S.

Read Andy’s full take here.

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 and  on Tesoro Logistics Northwest Pipeline LLC v. Department of Revenue, the Oregon Tax Court, Regular Division, held that although a unit of property acquired by one centrally assessed company from another qualified as “new property” for purposes of Or. Const. Art. XI, § 11 (“Measure 50”), the unit of property’s existing maximum assessed value (“MAV”) was preserved in the hands of the new owner.  Tesoro Logistics Nw. Pipeline LLC v. Dep’t of Revenue, No. TC 5252, 2021 WL 6700471 (Or. Tax Ct., Reg. Div., Feb. 19, 2021).  As a result, the Oregon Department of Revenue was not entitled to redetermine the MAV on account of the acquisition. Continue reading on the SeeSALT blog.

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The control and beneficial ownership of real estate in the U.S. has been relatively easy to conceal. Christian A. BuergerDavid L. Miller, and Andrew J. Weiner discuss how this disclosure regime is about the change dramatically in “What New Corporate Disclosures Mean For Real Estate.”

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Pillsbury partner Breann Robowski will present during ABA/IPT’s 2021 Advanced Property Tax Seminar on March 18. Breann will present on the topic, “Valuing the Fee Simple Interest for Tax Purposes in Situations Not Involving ‘Dark Stores.’” For more information and to register, please click here.

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As we say goodbye to 2020, we wanted to share our top five most-read articles of 2020 from Gravel2Gavel. The most-read blog posts covered real estate and construction industry trends ranging from proptech trends like blockchain tokenization to COVID-specific rent carveouts and management disclosures to trends and market updates. Our posts provided deep industry insight and summarized hot topics that addressed the legal implications and disruptions that affected the market.  Our 2020 roundup:

  1. Blockchain-Based Tokenization of Commercial Real Estate by Josh Morton and Matt Olhausen. Josh and Matt discuss the increasing interest in technology applications for real estate assets, or “Proptech,” and tokenization’s potential.
  2. Real Estate Trends: Looking Ahead to 2021 by Adam Weaver. Adam discussed the pandemic’s influence and future trends for the real estate market.
  3. Management’s Duties and Responsibilities to Disclose COVID-19 Cases to Commercial and Residential Tenants While Also Protecting Privacy by Rebecca Carr Rizzo. Rebecca discussed how timely and accurate disclosures of positive COVID-19 results could reduce liability.
  4. Real Estate Market Update. Bob Grados and Joel Simon discuss the current real estate market, the types of lenders active in the market, and popular transaction types that thrived in 2020.
  5. The Looming Housing Crisis and Limited Government Relief—An Examination of the CDC Eviction Moratorium Two Months In by Zachary Kessler.  Zach discussed the federal eviction moratorium.

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We’ve been busy podcasting! Here are some of our recent episodes focused on real estate and hospitality (and hosted by Joel Simon).

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Episode #22: Real Estate Market Update (Bob Grados): Listen in for an update on the current real estate market, which types of lenders are active in the market and the popular transaction types that are thriving in today’s environment.

Episode #17: Hotels & Hospitality: Opportunities, New Strategies and Future Transformation (Christian Salaman): Joel and Christian discuss the status of the hospitality industry, and provide an update on distressed projects, recovery forecasting and financing sources.

Episode #7: Real Estate and Financial Strategies during COVID-19 (Caroline Harcourt): Caroline and Joel discuss the impact of COVID-19 across the real estate sector, including forbearance requests to lenders, the impact on leasing and the opportunities and challenges down the road.

Don’t miss out, subscribe to our blog.

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Illinois Governor’s Executive Order prohibited sale of food or beverages for on-premises consumption held to partially excuse restaurant tenant’s rent payment obligations. In “Court Holds COVID-19 Executive Order Triggers Lease’s Force Majeure Clause, Excusing Some Rent Obligations,” colleagues David L. MillerPatrick J. PotterJessica H. Lee, and Katherine Sauter examine the order in the sixth article in a series of alerts on insolvency topics affecting real estate.

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As COVID-19 reverberates through the real estate and construction industries, impacted companies should revisit their employee compensation programs to preserve cash and drive performance while maintaining legal compliance. This is particularly true for companies normally dependent on high rents in cities, where commercial tenants are trading brick-and-mortar office space for work-from-home arrangements, and freeing up employees—unshackled by any commuting concerns—to relocate in pursuit of lower housing costs.

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