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Representative Cases

Real Property Issues: Represented property owners in easement disputes, including boundary line, trespass, light, air, and right-to-view disputes. We also represented property owners in partition actions which often involve the appointment of a receiver. Other types of cases include breach of contract, fraud, misrepresentation, specific performance and rescission. Some of the recent cases are noted below.

Breach of Lease: Represented downtown office high-rise building owner in action against a tenant who defaulted on a 5 year lease and vacated after 1 year. Settled 5 days before trial with tenant agreeing to pay client $525,000 in damages for past and future rents.

Overcoming Construction Hurdles: Represented property owner against soil engineering firm in claim against a soil engineering report which contained self serving statements and unnecessary limitations and conditions.  The soil engineering firm revised the report in line with our recommendations after one letter.

Predatory Lending: Represented borrower on a home loan transaction in action against a loan broker and agent for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. Recovered judgment of $52,000; including $25,000 in punitive damages and an additional $2,500 in sanctions.

Breach of Fiduciary Duty by Broker: Represented buyer of Woodside home in action against buyer's agent and broker for breach of fiduciary duty. Assisted buyer in selling home in order to mitigate damages. In addition, recovered $55,000 from broker in mediation.

Contractor's Duty on Fit and Finish: Represented homeowner against builder of log cabin home in claim against improper construction and failure to complete fit and finish items.

Liquidated Damages in CAR Forms: Represented buyer of new $1.3M home who sought to cancel transaction based on builder/seller change in terms. Builder failed to release deposit of $90,000 and demanded to retain same as liquidated damages. Recovered judgment in binding arbitration for buyer of entire $90,000 deposit plus award of attorney's fees and costs in excess of $25,000.

Quiet Title Actions: Represented buyer of condominium against son-in-law who refused to transfer legal title and sought to reestablish property ownership after buyer made payments for 20 years. Recovered clean title for buyer.

Purchase Money Deposit Disputes: Represented numerous buyers and sellers in rescission claims and civil actions involving "purchase money deposits." Most disputes resolved prior to or shortly after filing of suit. Most recently represented buyer in action against seller who refused to release buyer's $42,000 deposit on single family residence. Obtained release of entire sum after one letter.

Real Estate Title Disputes: Represented holders of beneficial interest in real property who were not of record title, and sought to have property owner remove improper deed of trust that was recorded against the property some 8 years earlier. Successfully obtained court order requiring reconveyance of the trust deed and established clients as legal owners.

Business Disputes: Represented principals and shareholders in various partnership, LLC and corporate disputes. Recently represented two parties on title to real estate in an action against third owner for a partition by sale of the property. Successfully appointed a receiver and recovered unpaid back rents and attorneys fees when property was sold pursuant to court order.

Employment: Represented employers as well as employees in drafting employment agreements and litigating employment issues. Recently represented an employee/principal who was terminated without cause and deprived of equity and income. Case is pending.

Personal Injury: Represented plaintiffs in automobile accidents of all kinds; numerous trip and fall cases at groceries stores and city sidewalks as well as assault and battery cases. Recently assisted a client injured by a reckless driver while riding his motorcycle. Despite absence of wage loss, we successfully recovered $1,100,000 by settlement.

False Imprisonment: Represented a grocery store shopper falsely arrested and detained for shoplifting. He sustained injury while being detained by store security. Recovery of $7,500.

Elder Abuse: Represent plaintiffs as well as defendant in elder abuse claims particularly those related to real property.

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Law Offices of Steven D. Hoffman
563 South Murphy Ave
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
Phone: 408-549-1719
Fax: 408-900-8225
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