Overview

For more than 34 years, Gilchrist & Rutter has been a leading name in real estate law serving clients transforming and revitalizing Southern California real estate and real estate nationwide.  Our full service practice encompasses commercial, retail and industrial development, financing, leasing, purchases, sales and exchanges.  We handle property management, brokerage and consulting contracts and all related issues.  We provide a full service, market-aware approach to all aspects of commercial, industrial, retail and residential properties for developers, lenders, architects, contractors, engineers, brokers and consultants.


Our Expertise

We have vast experience representing landlords and tenants in the negotiation and documentation of commercial, retail and industrial leases.  We have successfully negotiated and documented leases and lease amendments involving millions of square feet of space in both downtown and suburban markets across the country, including national law firm and financial service company leases, leases for Fortune 500 companies, and leases for full-service restaurants, fast food operations, bookstores, grocery stores and banking facilities.  In addition, we have significant experience handling ground leases, sale/leaseback transactions, license agreements (including telecommunications licenses) and equity-sharing agreements.

Our  skill and expertise in the leasing area enables us to efficiently and effectively represent landlord and tenant clients with respect to the ongoing aspects of the landlord/tenant relationship, such as lease disputes, restructurings, terminations and unlawful detainer proceedings.  We have years of experience counseling and advising our landlord clients with respect to all areas of asset management, including the negotiation and documentation of service provider contracts (such as security and janitorial) and brokerage agreements for individual tenant representation and for exclusive agency representation in building leasing programs.

We represent both borrowers and lenders in pre-development, construction, interim and permanent loan transactions, workouts and foreclosures. We have successfully closed over $25 billion in real estate financing transactions. We have negotiated and documented many securitized CMBS facilities, portfolio loans, mezzanine loans and preferred equity deals.

We have in-depth expertise in all aspects of real estate development, ranging from site acquisition and pre-development work to construction, financing and leasing. We are experienced in the development of high-rise office complexes, suburban and campus office developments, retail shopping centers, marinas, and multi-use commercial, retail and hotel projects.

Our attorneys are experts in drafting development agreements for our landowner and developer clients, providing you with greater certainty in proceeding with a development project without being subjected to subsequently enacted regulations. We have handled the drafting and negotiation of development agreements for a wide range of complex projects, often involving multiple constituencies and interests. We also handle later related matters concerning amendments to or breach of these agreements.

Our firm structures, negotiates and documents the purchase, sale and exchange of office, retail, hotel, multi-family and industrial properties, as well as development sites.

Obtaining entitlements from government for land use projects requires legal and political knowledge of state and local plans, policies, and regulations.  Our land use attorneys have extensive experience obtaining a wide range of entitlements, including those related to general plans, specific plans, subdivisions, CEQA compliance, variances, conditional use permits, zone changes, site plan reviews, development agreements, and coastal development permits.  

We have represented developers, financial institutions, partnerships and REITs in securing entitlements  for master planned communities, mixed-use industrial, commercial and resident centers, infill development, new towns, and annexation.  Our experience representing developers or public entities in planning, development regulation, and litigation gives us credibility with the public sector to obtain timely and effective approvals for our clients.

California Coastal Commission

With many clients in the California coastal zone, our land use attorneys have expertise obtaining Coastal Development Permits and Local Coastal Plan approvals.  Our team of attorneys and staff provides pre-approval strategy, application preparation and processing, and  work directly with the California Coastal Commission and local agencies to obtain project approvals.   We also have experience defending clients rights in actions and enforcement matters brought by the Coastal Commission.
Our expertise includes 32 years’ experience counseling clients with respect to acquisitions, rent control litigation, state and local oversight and regulation, resident lawsuits, financing, tax-deferred sales, and failure to maintain litigation.  We also specialize maximizing the value of park property through closures for redevelopment, and subdivision for increased land value.  We provide counsel with assessing the asset and negotiating the optimal process to maximize value.  We have been instrumental in State and local advocacy on behalf of community owners with legislative and administrative agencies.

Our firm merges years of expertise in construction, development, leasing, environmental law, land use and asset management to help you navigate and comply with applicable local, state and federal laws concerning dealing with minimizing a project's resource footprint while maximizing the benefits of investments in "green" improvements.

We provide sophisticated tax planning addressing federal and state income tax and property tax issues for our clients in their real estate transactions.

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Our environmental attorneys have a firm command of the complex and challenging issues you may encounter involving environmental regulation compliance, enforcement or litigation.  We are experienced in cleanup of contaminated property, regulatory compliance counseling, environmental site assessment, or environmental issues in purchase, sale, leasing or financing transactions.  Read more.

The Real Estate Team

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