Case Conclusion Date:April 15, 2004
Outcome:Success on Appeal re Novel Lis Pendens Issue
Description:This case involved a condominium development. The trustees of the development brought suit against the developer for alleged defects in the building and attempted to obtain an attachment on property owned by the developer, as well as to record memoranda of lis pendens on the developer's property. In response to the trustees' motion for a preliminary injunction, the Superior Court held in the defendants' favor on all issues, denying the motion for attachment and the lis pendens. The plaintiffs appealed the denial of lis pendens to a single justice of the Appeals Court. Because the case involved a novel issue of law regarding the application of the amended lis pendens statute, the Single Justice referred the case to a full panel of the Court. We argued that lis pendens were inappropriate in the case because the trustees' claims did not involve a claim of right to title of the developer's property -- the trustees simply wanted to encumber property owned by the developer as a form of security and settlement leverage with respect to their underlying claims for alleged defects in their own property. The Appeals Court held in favor of the defendants, and affirmed the denial of the motion for lis pendens.