Mayer Brown has the strength, experience and depth to advise and deal with the most complex real estate litigation matters for our clients. Mayer Brown provides comprehensive advice and represents clients in litigation, arbitration and judicial reference proceedings involving real property and related disputes. We also frequently provide preemptive advice to our clients to reduce litigation risk. Mayer Brown works closely with our clients to identify their objectives from the beginning so that we can provide clear, proactive and commercial advice and together formulate a strategy that achieves their goals.

Mayer Brown has a wealth of experience resolving matters so as to maintain or increase the value or usefulness of our clients’ real estate assets and investments. Our team of real estate litigation lawyers is fully integrated with other Mayer Brown practices, including Real Estate, Restructuring, Bankruptcy & Insolvency, Banking & Finance, Environmental, Construction & Engineering, Insurance, and Professional Liability. We frequently work closely with colleagues in these practices to draft appropriate provisions and provide strategic advice related to deal structures and terms. As a result, Mayer Brown is able to assist clients facing complex issues and seeking innovative solutions.

We represent major residential mortgage-backed security (RMBS) and commercial mortgage-backed security (CMBS) issuers, underwriters, trustees and servicers in state and federal securities actions across the United States. Our experience litigating contract and securities actions based on mortgage-backed securities on behalf of multiple parties provides us with industry-leading knowledge concerning all aspects of these disputes, such as the rights of the parties under pooling and servicing agreements and indemnification and repurchase obligations and contractual obligations. We also have deep experience responding to SEC and state AG investigations arising out of RMBS transactions.

Mayer Brown also litigates and provides strategic advice on all aspects of property-related disputes, including insolvency and distressed-asset matters, real estate finance disputes, leasing, development, receiverships, foreclosures and other means of enforcing security over real estate assets.

We act for clients with disputes arising from a wide range of real estate relationships. These include landlord/tenant, lender/borrower, joint venture/partnership/limited liability company, servicers/special servicers/master servicers and trustee/investor disputes. We also advise on insurance-related and professional indemnity matters within the real estate sector.

Other areas on which we counsel include:

  • Commercial rent review
  • Termination of leases, including break options
  • Rights to light issues
  • Terminal dilapidations and other disrepair and reinstatement claims
  • Possession, trespass and nuisance claims, including injunctions against protestors
  • Property contract drafting
  • Business tenancy renewals
  • Landlord and tenant disputes, such as tenant defaults, landlord’s consent issues and service charge claims
  • Restrictive covenants and easements
  • Claims under property contracts, including conditional sale and overage agreements
  • Disputes arising out of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)


  • Successfully represented a real estate development company in prosecuting a claim in an international arbitration against a joint venture partner arising from a failed resort project in Mexico.
  • Assisted a real estate developer in resolving disputes with its joint venture partners, thereby facilitating the redevelopment of a major property in Chicago.
  • Representing a real estate development company in prosecuting a claim in an international arbitration against the United States of Mexico under NAFTA.
  • Successfully defended a real estate investment firm against a multimillion dollar claim asserted in federal court by an investment banker seeking a placement fee for capital raised for a real estate investment trust.
  • Successfully represented a real estate development company in defeating the claims of a hold-over tenant attempting to halt redevelopment of a property for use as a high tech data center.
  • Advised numerous real estate development companies and investment funds in successfully terminating purchase, development and financing agreements.
  • Advised real estate investment funds and individual investors as to rights and obligations with respect to responding to capital calls.
  • Represented Capital & Counties in relation to the Covent Garden estate, London, England to support their efforts to develop it as one of the world's most prestigious retail and leisure locations.
  • Represented US investment bank JP Morgan in relation to issues arising on its £495 million acquisition and refurbishment of what will be their European headquarters, 25 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, London, England. The insolvency of the previous tenant, Lehman Brothers, created cross-border insolvency issues and the need to advise on structuring the translation so as to preserve liabilities.
  • Represented a landlord in a rent review arbitration regarding the lease of a large retail site on Oxford Street, London, England.
  • Represented an insurer and its insured firm of surveyors in the successful settlement of the largest professional negligence claim the firm had faced for years, arising from the attempted exercise of a number of lease break options.
  • Represented a corporate claimant in a professional negligence claim against its lawyers arising from the invalid exercise of a number of lease break options.
  • Represented an overseas fund requiring advice on investing in non-performing loans secured over commercial, residential and buy-to-let property across the United Kingdom.
  • Represented a developer in challenging the validity of a light obstruction notice by the owner of a building neighboring the site of the client's proposed development.
  • Represented a major corporation in relation to a tribunal application by the British Secretary of State for Transport for a compulsory purchase order (CPO) and secured the retention of a right to run a railway line over the land subject to the CPO.
  • Represented a leading United Kingdom corporation in an arbitration and parallel independent expert determination. Also advised on an associated professional negligence claim against the client’s former lawyers and planning consultants.
  • Represented a property investor in facilitating the future redevelopment of a property portfolio using lease renewal proceedings to incorporate landlord’s breaks into the leases of the site.