Real Estate Lease Disputes May Be Prelude To Litigation
According to many connoisseurs, Utah boasts the most beautiful ski trails in the nation, with its lush white powder earning the state’s reputation as home to the greatest snow in the world. Anyone who has experienced Utah’s natural beauty would not be surprised that more than 20 million guests visit the state each year, making ski resorts and recreation areas big business in Utah. Frequently, the massive expanses of territory on which ski areas operate are governed by real estate leases between resort owners and land owners. As is the case with businesses in any other industry, such leases are often the subject of legal disputes that may result in real estate litigation.
One of the larger recent real estate disputes in Utah involved a disagreement between a property owner called Wolf Mountain and the resort company to whom it leased its premises, the American Skiing Company Utah (ACSU). While the lease entitled ACSU to develop a four-season ski village including a golf course, its representatives claimed that Wolf Mountain stood in the way of development by refusing to grant permission it had promised in the lease. For its part, Wolf Mountain claimed that ACSU had breached the lease in several significant ways, and that it was thus entitled to repossess the land on which the ski resort existed.
Common real estate litigation issues
The allegations and accusations in this suit demonstrate many of the issues that are typically at play in real estate disputes, regardless of the location. Such issues include:
- Breach of contract related to terms of the lease
- Breach of implied good faith covenants
- Intentional interference with economic relations with others
The basis of such claims is that one party’s failure to live up to the terms of the agreement resulted in economic harm to the other party. In the Wolf Mountain case, ACSU was able to demonstrate the Wolf Mountain’s breaches resulted in damages that cost it more than $50 million. While ACSU ultimately prevailed in court, the intangible costs associated with such litigation may never be recovered.
For individuals who wish to avoid the type of impasse that lead to the Wolf Mountain litigation, Utah real estate attorneys may be able to facilitate resolutions through negotiations. When discussions break down, however, parties must be prepared to assert their claims in court.
If you are embarking on a real estate enterprise or are facing a dispute related to real estate, call on the qualified attorneys at Jeffs & Jeffs, P.C. who can assist you in pursuing your aims and asserting your rights.