Real Estate Law

Real Estate and Real Property

Real Property (Real Estate) is the practice area that addresses the various forms of ownership of land and the structures attached to it. Real Property is distinct from Personal Property. The basic definition is that Real Property is land and what is attached to it, and Personal Property is everything else.

The practice area of Real Property is dominated by the common law legal system. Contract Law also heavily applies. In the CNMI, the Constitution and case law interpreting the Constitution also plays a unique role in this practice area.

The Real Property practice area breaks down between Land Transactions and Landlord Tenant.

Land Transactions (the buying and sale of long-term interests in land) are more complicated in the CNMI than in most jurisdictions because there is a constitutional limitation on who can own land in the CNMI and what interests may be transferred. The transfer of interests in land are also made difficult by title issues unique in many ways to the CNMI, boundary issues (encroachments), development restrictions such as setbacks from the Lagoon, and environmental and zoning restrictions that are also unique to the CNMI. Handling land transactions in the CNMI requires knowledge of all these issues.

Landlord Tenant law is simpler in the CNMI than in most jurisdictions because of the lack of government regulation. There is a Holdover Tenancy Act in the CNMI, and contract law applies. But Landlord Tenant is not as complicated as Land Transactions.

The Real Property practice area involves a wide range of areas of law that include the common law, contracts, statutory conveyance laws such as the CNMI Condominium Act, zoning law, and even probate law. The attorneys at Dotts Law have extensive experience in Real Property, representing landowners, landlords, buyers, developers, investors, and brokers.

If you own or are interested in investing in real property in the CNMI, our lawyers can assist you with all your legal needs, such as:

  • Drafting conveyance documents including deeds and leases
  • Reviewing title reports and identifying issues
  • Drafting and enforcing contracts such as brokerage agreements
  • Clearing title through the legal process
  • Advising and representation related to Zoning and land use matters