Morris Manning & Martin, LLP

Real Estate

The Commercial Real Estate Development & Finance Practice at Morris, Manning & Martin is one of the key original practices of the firm. For almost four decades, our lawyers have represented developers and investors in every aspect of commercial real estate, including fund formation, zoning and other land use matters, acquisition, debt and equity financing, development and construction, environmental strategies, leasing, operation and disposition. The Commercial Real Estate Practice is listed in Chambers USA, a leading professional services ranking publication.

We are experienced in every stage of the real estate cycle. Our clients include real estate investment trusts, institutional investors, pension funds and pension fund advisers, private equity, opportunity funds, commercial banks, governments, statutory bodies, investment banks, industrial banks, insurance companies, real estate holding companies, developers and corporations of every kind. Because we see deals from all sides and know how they work from the inside, we add value to the transaction for our clients. Understanding the business of our clients enables us to provide services tailored to their needs.

Our Real Estate team’s close cooperation with the firm's litigation, bankruptcy and insolvency, private equity, environmental, project finance, public sector, construction, tax and other practices enables us to deliver comprehensive services for virtually every kind of real estate need a client might have.

Multifaceted Approach

Because our lawyers are familiar with all major classes of real estate, we bring a broad range of experience to each project. Many of the projects for which we have acted as lead counsel are of national significance. Our investment fund and developer clients benefit from our sophisticated knowledge in structuring debt facilities and equity offerings.  Examples of the creativity and originality of our team include the award-winning Atlantic StationTM in Atlanta, Georgia, and the negotiation of infrastructure solutions leading to the successful development of the 2,100-acre Reunion mixed-use resort adjacent to Disney World in Orlando.

Solution Oriented Team

Clients gain from our Real Estate Practice’s multidisciplinary approach. Our lawyers bring to bear both industry expertise and legal experience in addressing environmental, tax, securities, creditors’ rights, affordable housing, employment and intellectual property concerns. When needed, our experienced litigators are called upon to resolve disputes in the courtroom or through alternative dispute resolution.

Building Together

Our goal is to create a lasting partnership with our clients. We serve as an extension of our clients’ goodwill and conduct ourselves accordingly. On every project we work with our clients to pass successfully through the minefield of regulatory, environmental and community issues that must be navigated to achieve success. As our clients grow, we are there with creative and productive solutions drawn from years of experience in a sophisticated practice of national stature. At Morris, Manning & Martin, our Real Estate Development & Finance Practice continues to grow and flourish by remembering at all times that ultimately our clients’ success is the only true measure of our success.

Key Services:

  • Acquisitions
  • Affordable housing developments
  • Bond financing
  • Brownfield redevelopments
  • Conservation easements
  • Debt & equity financing
  • Development & construction
  • Environmental strategies/ solutions
  • Hospitality
  • Industrial
  • Master planned communities
  • Medical properties
  • Mixed-use developments
  • Multi-family developments
  • Office development
  • Office, industrial & retail leasing
  • Partnerships & joint ventures
  • Real estate litigation
  • Residential & office condominiums
  • Resorts & golf course communities
  • Retail development
  • Tax structuring & tax-free exchanges
  • Timberland
  • Workouts
  • Zoning and land use
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Areas of Expertise

Commercial Finance

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Morris, Manning & Martin has a broad Commercial Finance Practice (including non-traditional credit areas) representing banks, investment funds and other financial institutions. We assist our clients in transactions providing debt capital, including syndicated and single-lender senior secured and unsecured credit facilities, real estate and other asset-based financings, mezzanine loans and other forms of junior financing, agency lending, government guaranteed loans, traditional bank financings and other types of debt financing. Additionally, our lawyers assist Commercial Finance clients with workouts, restructuring and other types of loan modifications. The practice has been listed as a premier banking & finance practice by Chambers USA, a leading legal services ranking organization, since 2007.

Traditional Bank Representation

Morris, Manning & Martin’s Commercial Finance lawyers represent leading multinational financial institutions, regional banks and community banks in their lending activities. Members of our finance group are knowledgeable in a wide variety of transactions, including conventional commercial transactions, construction loans, term loans, real estate, asset-based lines of credit and other secured loans. Additionally, we assist our traditional banking clients with loan sales, modifications, foreclosures and participations.

Senior Financing - Syndicated and Single-Lender Transactions

Our lawyers represent administrative agents, collateral agents, lead arrangers and book runners in syndicated senior secured and unsecured financing transactions in a variety of industries. These types of transactions range from acquisition financing to revolving and term loans to highly structured multi-lien transactions. By being apprised of the latest industry trends and having practical experience closing hundreds of syndicated and single-lender transactions, we are able to assist our lending clients with structuring, documenting and ultimately closing these transactions.

CMBS, Mezzanine and Other Structured Products

We represent a variety of lenders originating highly structured real estate loans destined for securitization and other sectors of the capital markets. We have closed hundreds of conduit loans secured by all types of asset classes, including retail, hospitality, multifamily, office, mixed-use, condominiums and mobile home facilities. Our team has experience with A/B structures, tenants-in-common, floating rate loans, hyper-amortization and other types of structured transactions. Additionally, our team works with lenders to structure and close mezzanine and other subordinated debt financings such as "B" notes or similar junior participations in securitized loans. Our team draws upon its experience to address situations ranging from intercreditor issues to matters impacting rating agencies review and approval. From the initial loan application through the securitization or other secondary market disposition of a loan, the members of the Commercial Finance Practice provide insight and practical advice required to successfully close transactions in today’s market.

Government Insured Loans (including SBA, FHA and USDA)

The members of the Commercial Finance Practice have extensive experience with loans guaranteed or insured by the Federal government. Our team of lawyers and paralegals has decades of combined experience and has represented many of the nation’s largest lenders in transactions across the country. Our team has developed specialized skills in the government’s policies and procedures and a clear understanding of the complexities involved with these types of loans. Our SBA team generally closes more than 100 loan transactions each year, with property types ranging from independent pharmacies, veterinary hospitals, funeral homes and crematories, and dental offices to hotels, wedding and event facilities, breweries, convenience stores, quick-service restaurants, and other small businesses. The attorneys on our FHA team have in depth knowledge of and experience in the HUD’s multifamily, senior housing, healthcare and hospital financing programs. Our team has worked with both the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Healthcare Programs and Office of Multifamily Housing Programs, and we are familiar with all of their construction and permanent lending programs. Our Commercial Finance lawyers are also familiar with the USDA Section 538 Guaranteed Rural Rental Housing Program and regularly assist our lending clients with developing processes and procedures that ensure our lending clients’ loans comply with government regulations.

Agency Lending - Freddie Mac® and Fannie Mae®

Freddie Mac® Seller-Servicers and Fannie Mae® DUS lenders across the country can trust the skilled team at Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP, with transactions originated under their product lines. Our attorneys have closed hundreds of loans under the Fannie Mae® and Freddie Mac® multifamily mortgage programs, including standard fixed rate and variable rate loans, acquisition upgrade and acquisition rehabilitation loans, streamlined refinances, supplemental loans, and forward commitments for new construction or rehabilitation, as well as bond credit enhancements. Our attorneys have particular experience working with the Multifamily Division of Freddie Mac®, including immediate cash deliveries, early rate lock transactions and credit enhancement transactions, and the team regularly represents Freddie Mac® lenders in multifamily conventional and affordable loan programs.

Franchise Lending - Restaurant and Convenience/Gas

The Commercial Finance Practice has developed a unique skill set tailored to represent lenders in the often complex franchise lending arena. We have significant experience in transactions involving dozens of quick service or casual dining franchises, as well as convenience and gas facilities. With often more than 50 collateral sites involved, we understand the importance of assembling a team of experienced attorneys, paralegals and other staff members to insure each closing is handled proficiently and economically. We are often called upon to work directly with large franchisors to address franchise and lease provisions that are not in favor of lenders. Whether funding an acquisition, recapitalization or a sale/leaseback, our team has a breadth of knowledge and experience to expertly guide lenders through the closing process.

Commercial Loan Servicing

MMM’s lawyers have represented servicers and special servicers throughout the U.S. in all aspects of performing and distressed CMBS, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD and FHA loans, including loan assignments, restructuring of debt, enforcement proceedings and foreclosures, as well as other risk management and litigation issues. We also advise lenders and servicers on Inter-creditor Agreements, Pooling and Servicing Agreements, and other third party and investor relation issues. We handle condemnation and eminent domain proceedings as well as issues arising in the servicing of construction loans, particularly construction loans originated under FHA’s Multifamily and healthcare programs under the HUD 221(d)(4), 232 and 242 programs. Our Servicing team possesses a thorough knowledge of the responsibilities of FHA multifamily and LEAN lenders, Freddie Mac Seller-Servicers, and Fannie Mae DUS lenders. Due to this expertise, FHA lenders and servicers frequently seek the advice of MMM attorneys on guidance relating to the MAP Guide and applicable HUD statutes and regulations; the team’s experience working with both HUD’s Office of Healthcare Programs and the Office of Multifamily Housing Programs is an asset in these transactions.

Commercial Real Estate Debt Management

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Morris, Manning & Martin's extensive experience working with both real estate owners and lenders has prepared us to guide and support clients through the current credit crisis. Our Commercial Real Estate Debt Management Practice provides legal support and practical business advice to real estate owners in all aspects of their relationships with their lenders.

Industry Knowledge

Our experience in working with conduit CMBS and similar loans, representing both borrowers and lenders, gives us a very high level of expertise to draw upon in providing advice to borrowers on how to handle their relationships with master and special servicers. Our lawyers advise borrowers on how to conduct themselves and operate their properties to avoid the "recourse" pitfalls in conduit loan documents and defend them against claims by lenders that their loans have become fully or partially "recourse" against individual guarantors. We protect our clients by analyzing questions of possible lender liability and pursuing lender liability claims and advise and assist them in efforts to restructure or workout troubled mortgage or mezzanine financings.

Business Partners

Our interdisciplinary team, comprised of banking, real estate, litigation, bankruptcy and tax professionals, assists our borrower clients in managing their relationships with lenders and their loan servicers, restructuring mortgage and mezzanine loans, identifying tax ramifications related to troubled real estate and working through joint venture or partnership disputes.

Forward-Looking Advocates

With the fallout in today’s credit markets it is essential to have legal counsel who can deal effectively with non-performing loans and financially-troubled real estate and also prepare owners to take advantage of the opportunities that may arise to acquire real estate and debt. Our lawyers can assist and counsel you in achieving the best results in this economic crisis.

Key Services:

  • Borrower representation in troubled loans
  • Debt sales and purchases
  • Distressed opportunities
  • Joint venture disputes
  • Lender liability
  • Litigation
  • Non-recourse guaranty counseling and claim defense
  • Restructuring debt

Commercial Real Estate Finance

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Morris, Manning & Martin has a broad Commercial Real Estate Finance Practice (including non-traditional credit areas) representing banks, investment funds and other financial institutions. We assist our clients in transactions providing debt capital, including syndicated and single-lender senior secured and unsecured credit facilities, real estate and other asset-based financings, mezzanine loans and other forms of junior financing, agency lending, government guaranteed loans, traditional bank financings and other types of debt financing. Additionally, our lawyers assist clients with workouts, restructuring and other types of loan modifications. The practice has been listed as a premier banking & finance practice by Chambers USA, a leading legal services ranking organization, since 2007.

Senior Financing – Syndicated and Single-Lender Transactions

Our lawyers represent administrative agents, collateral agents, lead arrangers and book runners in syndicated senior secured and unsecured financing transactions in a variety of industries. These types of transactions range from acquisition financing to revolving and term loans to highly structured multi-lien transactions. By being apprised of the latest industry trends and having practical experience closing hundreds of syndicated and single-lender transactions, we are able to assist our lending clients with structuring, documenting and ultimately closing these transactions.

CMBS, Mezzanine and other Structured Products

We represent a variety of lenders originating highly structured real estate loans destined for securitization and other sectors of the capital markets. We have closed hundreds of conduit loans secured by all types of asset classes, including retail, hospitality, multifamily, office, mixed-use, condominiums and mobile home facilities. Our team has experience with A/B structures, tenants-in-common, floating rate loans, hyper-amortization and other types of structured transactions. Additionally, our team works with lenders to structure and close mezzanine and other subordinated debt financings such as "B" notes or similar junior participations in securitized loans. Our team draws upon its experience to address situations ranging from intercreditor issues to matters impacting rating agencies review and approval. From the initial loan application through the securitization or other secondary market disposition of a loan, the members of the Commercial Finance Practice provide insight and practical advice required to successfully close transactions in today’s market.

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae

Freddie Mac® and Fannie Mae® lenders across the country can trust the skilled team at Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP, with a variety of transactions originated under their product lines. We have closed thousands of loans under the Freddie Mac® conventional mortgage program, including standard fixed rate and variable rate loans, acquisition upgrade and acquisition rehabilitation loans, streamlined refinances, supplemental loans, and forward commitments for new construction or rehabilitation, as well as bond credit enhancements. We now add to that scope of experience substantial proficiency under the Fannie Mae Delegated and Underwriting Servicing conventional loan program. Our lending group offers extensive breadth and insight into Freddie Mac® and Fannie Mae® transactions. Our attorneys have particular experience working with the Multifamily Division of Freddie Mac®, including immediate cash deliveries, early rate lock transactions and credit enhancement transactions, and the team regularly represents Freddie Mac® lenders in multifamily conventional and affordable loan programs. Our team includes a former director and associate general counsel to Fannie Mae®, who brings over 21 years of experience and perspective to the practice. She has a comprehensive knowledge of Fannie Mae® multifamily products and has also served as a vice president and transaction manager for a Fannie Mae® DUS lender, where her work with underwriters, producers, closers and outside counsel assured successful multifamily loan deliveries and transactions to Fannie Mae®.

Franchise Lending – Restaurant and Convenience/Gas

The Commercial Real Estate Finance Practice has developed a unique skill set tailored to represent lenders in the often complex franchise lending arena. We have significant experience in transactions involving dozens of quick service or casual dining franchises, as well as convenience and gas facilities. With often more than 50 collateral sites involved, we understand the importance of assembling a team of experienced attorneys, paralegals and other staff members to insure each closing is handled proficiently and economically. We are often called upon to work directly with large franchisors to address franchise and lease provisions that are not in favor of lenders. Whether funding an acquisition, recapitalization or a sale/leaseback, our team has a breadth of knowledge and experience to expertly guide lenders through the closing process.

Traditional Bank Representation

Morris, Manning & Martin’s Commercial Finance lawyers represent leading multinational financial institutions, regional banks and community banks in their lending activities. Members of our finance group are knowledgeable in a wide variety of transactions, including conventional commercial transactions, construction loans, term loans, real estate, asset-based lines of credit and other secured loans. Additionally, we assist our traditional banking clients with loan sales, modifications, foreclosures and participations.

Government Guaranteed Loans

The members of the Commercial Finance Practice have extensive experience with government guaranteed loans, with a particular emphasis on Small Business Administration loans. Our team of lawyers and paralegals has decades of combined experience and has represented many of the nation’s largest government guaranteed lenders in transactions across the country. Our team has developed specialized skills in the government’s policies and procedures and a clear understanding of the complexities involved with government guaranteed loans. In addition, our attorneys have an in depth knowledge and experience into the FHA’s multifamily, senior housing, healthcare and hospital financing programs. Our team has worked with both the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development’s Office of Healthcare Programs, as well as HUD’s FHA Office of Multifamily Housing Programs, and we are familiar with all of their construction and permanent lending programs. Our Commercial Finance lawyers are also familiar with the USDA’s Rural Housing Programs and regularly assist our lending clients with developing processes and procedures that ensure our lending clients’ loans comply with government regulations.

Commercial Loan Servicing

MMM’s lawyers have represented servicers and special servicers throughout the U.S. in all aspects of performing and distressed CMBS, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD and FHA loans, including loan assignments, restructuring of debt, enforcement proceedings and foreclosures, as well as other risk management and litigation issues. We also advise lenders and servicers on Inter-creditor Agreements, Pooling and Servicing Agreements, and other third party and investor relation issues. We handle condemnation and eminent domain proceedings and the servicing of construction loans, including the unique experience of assisting with hundreds of FHA’s Multifamily and healthcare programs such as those under section 221(d)(4), 232 and 242 with a thorough knowledge of the DUS and MAP Guides and the responsibilities of DUS and LEAN lenders. To that end, FHA lenders and servicers frequently seek the advice of MMM attorneys on guidance relating to the Guides and HUD statutes and regulations, and the team’s experience working with both the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Healthcare Programs and HUD’s FHA Office of Multifamily Housing Programs is an asset in these transactions.

Key Services:

  • Senior Financing - Syndicated and Single-Lender Transactions
  • Commercial Loan Servicing
  • CMBS, Mezzanine and other Structured Products
  • FHA and HUD
  • Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae
  • Franchise Lending - Restaurant and Convenience/Gas
  • Traditional Bank Financing
  • Government Guaranteed Loans
  • Note Pool Sales & Acquisitions
  • USDA Rural Housing

Commercial Real Estate Leasing

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Morris, Manning & Martin’s Commercial Real Estate Leasing Practice is experienced in all aspects of commercial real estate leasing transactions and related documents, instruments, agreements and issues. Leasing specialization includes substantial experience in representing landlords, tenants, investors, developers and lenders, in connection with the leasing of office, retail and industrial properties.

Our Leasing Team brings a pragmatic business perspective to the lease negotiation process. Working together with our Real Estate Finance Team enables us to fully understand the lender’s role in the lease approval process and the competing interests of landlords, tenants and lenders in leasing transactions. We pride ourselves on our ability to negotiate tri-party deals between these interested parties.

Landlord Representation

We provide full-service leasing representation to various types of owners and agents – broker/managers, private owners, banks, insurance companies, pension funds/pension fund advisors, REITs, private investment funds and overseas investors – for entire office, multiuse, and retail complexes. In addition to the negotiation of individual leases, we help coordinate the leasing objectives with your overall design, development, and management plans for the building, including the negotiation of commission, listing agreements and management agreements, work letters and development agreements, construction and architect contracts and other agreements with lenders, ground lessors, and other landlords concerning collateral leasing concerns.

Tenant Representation

We represent law firms, accounting firms, trade associations, private and public corporations and other businesses in leases of all sizes. We have represented tenants in single transactions as well as portfolio-wide representation. Our leasing lawyers are considered an integral part of our clients’ space management team. We take pride in our knowledge of the economic environment and the markets in which our clients’ transactions take place in order to maximize lease protections for them.

Build-to-Suit Transactions

We have substantial experience in all areas of land use, development, construction, finance and leasing issues relating to build-to-suit and design-build projects. We have worked with developers and tenants in connection with the structuring, negotiating and documenting build-to-suit transactions involving office, retail and industrial properties. Our clients include regional, national and international developers and owners with real estate interests throughout the U.S. Lawyers have also participated in numerous build-to-suit and design-build projects where the tenant/user was the United States of America (through the General Services Administration) or an agency of the federal government.

Construction

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At Morris, Manning & Martin, we understand the technical, business and legal issues inherent in the multidimensional construction process. Our Construction lawyers assure that developments proceed with our clients’ best interests in mind.

Cross-Function Representation

Construction projects involve a variety of parties, each having a different role in the permitting, procurement, design, implementation, completion and operation of each project. Lawyers in our Construction Practice represent each of the participants in the process, including owners, developers, lenders, bonding companies, construction managers, contractors, architects, engineers, subcontractors and suppliers. We understand construction from each distinct perspective and are able to leverage that knowledge to assist clients in accomplishing their overall business objectives.

Moving Projects Forward

We advise clients on all phases of the permitting, development, design and construction process. We assist with necessary permitting; assist with project procurement; draft and negotiate design and construction contracts and related documents; handle bid protests and procurement disputes; provide legal guidance during the construction phase; and resolve disputes during and after project completion. We represent clients involved with projects of all types ranging from residential construction to the largest commercial and industrial projects. We are LEED certified and advise on all aspects of green development and construction.

Representative matters include the development and construction of high-rise offices, hotels, apartments, condominiums, retail and mixed-use projects, destination resorts, infrastructure, transportation and medical and manufacturing facilities throughout the U.S. For projects large or small, our lawyers focus on moving development forward in a manner that best serves our clients’ needs and objectives.

Corralling Different Perspectives

We work side-by-side with our clients to identify issues or problems and minimize or expeditiously resolve disputes. Many members of our Construction Practice are experienced, certified mediators and arbitrators, and we draw from their experiences to assist clients in quickly identifying and resolving problems. Our Construction lawyers also tap into the wealth of Morris, Manning and Martin’s resources by consulting with relevant practice groups to provide targeted assistance on key issues. Combining this interdisciplinary assistance with an ability to see different parties’ perspectives enables us to achieve our clients’ business goals swiftly and efficiently.

Representative Litigation Matters

  • Represented national multi-tenant retail shopping center client in prosecution of construction and design defect litigation for damages caused by a deficient asphalt paving system in a fifty-acre regional shopping center.

  • Represented owner and former lender of student housing project in downtown Atlanta in the prosecution of construction and design defect claims against general contractor and design professional regarding moisture intrusion into individual units.

  • Represented national warehouse facility developer in construction defect litigation involving facilities in Phoenix, Arizona.

  • Represented national owner/developer of retail centers, luxury high-rise condominiums and mixed-use developments with regard to claims involving the design and construction of The Wharf at Orange Beach, Alabama (the largest mixed-use marina/resort development in the southeastern U.S.).

  • Represented the owner/developer of the Atlantic Station mixed-use project in Atlanta, Georgia (the largest mixed-used Brownfield redevelopment project in the U.S.) in design and construction claims associated with the project.

  • Represented a major Florida-based resort owner/developer on claims involving the construction of an $80 million high-rise condominium/marina and resort project and a $70 million expansion of an existing destination luxury resort in Hammock Beach, Florida.

  • Represented national multifamily residential real estate developer in construction defect litigation in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, Tampa, Florida, and Miami, Florida.

  • Represented international technology company in bid protest litigation successfully affirming $391 million contract award.

  • Represented design/build contractor involving the design and construction of the following resort and destination projects and casinos: Typhoon Lagoon, Blizzard Beach, Disney Dixie Landings and Disney Celebration attractions at Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida and Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island, Bahamas, and MGM Grand and Luxor casinos in Las Vegas, Nevada.

  • Represented general contractor in claims arising out of the design and construction of the Peachtree Center, Five Points, Georgia State, Midtown and Brookhaven MARTA Stations in Atlanta, Georgia.

Representative Transactional Matters

  • Represented publicly-traded real estate investment trust specializing in retail shopping centers and single-tenant commercial buildings in negotiating construction, design-build, architectural/engineering/design services, and/or consultant agreements for construction, tenant improvements, shell build outs, and other general property improvements on projects in over 25 states.

  • Represented national developer of warehouse properties in drafting and negotiating design, engineering, design-build and construction contracts for multiple warehouse projects throughout the U.S.

  • Represented national hospitality developer in negotiating design and construction contracts for new construction and renovation of multiple branded hotels in over 30 states. 

  • Represented major national and international hotel and resort developer in drafting and negotiating design and construction contracts for multiple luxury destination resorts throughout the U.S. and the Caribbean.

  • Represented major automobile dealers in drafting and negotiating design and construction contracts for multiple automobile sales and servicing centers throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area.

  • Represented multiple national developers in drafting and negotiating student housing facilities and major national universities.

  • Represented owner/developer of the Atlantic Station mixed-use project in Atlanta, Georgia (the largest mixed-use Brownfield redevelopment project in the U.S.) in drafting and negotiating multiple infrastructure, design, and construction contracts for conversion of former steel mill into 138 acre mixed use facility.

  • Represented owner/developer of the Harbor Point mixed-use project in Stamford, Connecticut in drafting and negotiating design and construction contracts for the project.

  • Represented owner of the Atlanta Financial Center in Atlanta, Georgia, in drafting and negotiating design, engineering and construction contracts with local, state and federal entities involving the construction of a six-lane highway and rapid rail system beneath a multiple building high-rise office complex.

  • Represented specialty contractor in the drafting and negotiation of design, engineering, design-build and construction contracts for the Atlantis II Resort, Paradise Island, Bahamas and the MGM Grand and Luxor hotels, Las Vegas, Nevada.

     

 

 

Key Services:

  • Bid protests and procurement disputes
  • Design, permitting and development of construction projects
  • Design, engineering, construction contracts and related documents
  • Mediation, alternative dispute resolution, arbitration and litigation of construction issues and disputes

Eminent Domain & Condemnation

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Morris, Manning & Martin has a very active practice in the area of eminent domain. The lawyers in our Eminent Domain and Condemnation Practice Group have experience representing both property owners and condemning authorities in matters relating to all types of property, including multiuse, business, industrial, residential and unimproved acreage.

Depth of Experience

When you are faced with an actual or threatened taking of land or property, it is critical to have a legal team with substantial experience in that specialized area of the law. Our lawyers have represented clients in acquisitions by eminent domain of many different types of property and rights, including parking facilities, churches, residences, condominiums, mobile home parks, financial institutions, offices, warehouses, industrial plants, restaurants, service stations, convenience stores, hotels, retail businesses, land developments, billboards, airport facilities, health care facilities, subsurface tunnel easements, road right of way, and utility easements. We have represented both condemning authorities and property owners on issues relating to the exercise of redevelopment powers. In addition to direct condemnations, the firm has represented clients on matters involving inverse condemnation, i.e. where property is alleged to be taken without a formal exercise of the power of eminent domain.

Multidisciplinary Approach

Whether in the initial negotiations or during a jury trial, we employ a team approach to create effective solutions for the problems that takings can cause. Our lawyers draw upon years of trial experience and are supported by skilled paralegals and staff as wells as outside consultants and experts. In addressing the unique issues that often arise when the government exercises the power of eminent domain, we integrate the firm’s experience in governmental regulation, construction, environmental, real estate, land use and zoning. These efforts are made with careful consideration of our clients' goals and due regard to achieving those goals in a cost-effective manner.

Key Services:

  • Direct condemnation
  • Eminent domain acquisitions
  • Inverse condemnation
  • Representing property owners & condemning authorities

Freddie Mac® & Fannie Mae® Lending

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Morris, Manning and Martin, LLP is recognized throughout the Southeast for our firm’s experience in and knowledge of agency lending, including Freddie Mac® and Fannie Mae® products. Our attorneys integrate strategic business knowledge with balanced legal advice to help achieve and exceed our clients’ goals.

Significant Experience

Freddie Mac® and Fannie Mae® lenders across the country can trust the skilled team at Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP with a variety of transactions originated under their product lines. We have closed thousands of loans under the Freddie Mac® conventional mortgage program, including standard fixed rate and variable rate loans, acquisition upgrade and acquisition rehabilitation loans, streamlined refinances, supplemental loans, and forward commitments for new construction or rehabilitation, as well as bond credit enhancements. We now add to that scope of experience substantial proficiency under the Fannie Mae Delegated and Underwriting Servicing conventional loan program.

Comprehensive Skills

Our Lending group offers extensive breadth and insight into Freddie Mac® and Fannie Mae® transactions. Our attorneys have particular experience working with the Multifamily Division of Freddie Mac®, including immediate cash deliveries, early rate lock transactions and credit enhancement transactions, and the team regularly represents Freddie Mac® lenders in multifamily conventional and affordable loan programs. Our team includes a former director and associate general counsel to Fannie Mae®, who brings over 21 years of experience and perspective to the practice. She has a comprehensive knowledge of Fannie Mae® multifamily products and has also served as a vice president and transaction manager for a Fannie Mae® DUS lender, where her work with underwriters, producers, closers and outside counsel assured successful multifamily loan deliveries and transactions to Fannie Mae®.

Client Focused

Regardless of the size or type of transaction, our lawyers bring unparalleled service and innovative thinking to our clients every day. Combining resources and experience with depth and proficiency, our lawyers take an integrated, comprehensive approach to solving our clients’ lending needs.

Key Services:

  • Affordable loan programs
  • Conventional loan programs
  • Credit enhancement transactions
  • Delegated & underwriting servicing loans
  • Multifamily transactions
  • Taxable & tax-exempt bond credit enhancements

Hospitality

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Morris, Manning & Martin’s Hospitality Practice provides deep hospitality industry knowledge and responsive, innovative and efficient legal services to developers, owners, managers, investors and other participants in the hospitality industry. Our practice has extensive experience in hospitality transactions, and has the backing of a full-sized commercial law firm enabling it to draw from the firm’s attorneys in other practice groups when appropriate.

Transaction-Focused

Our Hospitality Practice represents clients in all areas of the hospitality business. Whether a transaction involves a single hotel, a 2,000-acre resort development, or the financing of a nationwide property portfolio, we have successfully guided clients through those and many similar transactions.

Industry Knowledge

Our lawyers have real-world experience from within the hospitality industry. We protect our clients’ interests and understand what is “market” for transactions, even when the market is changing. Hospitality transactions require a unique and learned skill set; they are not just real estate transactions, but also involve a business with complicated industry norms and practices. We understand those norms and practices, ensure they are followed, and in turn help add credibility to our clients’ transaction teams. Our deep-rooted experience allows us to foresee and resolve issues. We bring a practiced eye and a thorough approach; we are proactive rather than reactive.

Interdisciplinary

From the broad resources of Morris, Manning & Martin’s related practice areas, we draw other Morris, Manning & Martin lawyers into matters when appropriate. Attorneys in our Hospitality Practice act as a single point of contact to the firm’s wide range of legal services. When necessary, we create multidisciplinary teams to handle complex matters. We also work with our clients’ legal, finance and business teams to help our clients manage matters and maximize efficiencies. Through our team approach, we are focused on achieving our clients’ business and legal objectives.

Resort Fee Litigation & Advice

Numerous State Attorneys General are currently investigating the hospitality industry’s use and disclosure of mandatory “resort fees” charged to consumers.   Our attorneys are familiar with these investigations, and have the deep industry knowledge and consumer-protection experience to defend challenges to resort-fee charges and disclosure practices and to respond to government subpoenas.  They are prepared to do so in administrative actions brought by State Attorneys General across the nation or by the Federal Trade Commission, or in private litigation (including class-action suits).   Our attorneys are also prepared to advise firms in the hospitality industry on the risks and benefits of resort-fee pricing, and the most suitable disclosures based on client objectives.  

Key Services:

  • Asset Purchases and Sales Development
  • Mixed-Use Development Financing
  • Public/Private Partnerships
  • Real Estate Funds
  • Joint Ventures
  • Franchise Matters
  • Management Contracts
  • Development Management Agreements
  • Technical Services Agreements
  • Construction Contracts
  • Construction Litigation
  • Employment
  • Environmental
  • Tax Structuring

Landlord/Tenant Representation

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Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP represents landlords and property management companies of single family investment portfolios as well as multifamily and commercial property owners.  The average dispossessory filings in the practice are in excess of (300) filings per month.  Our team performs dispossessory services and evictions in a timely manner and we offer complete transparency to our clients -- a critical component of the services we offer.  We achieve this transparency by providing a web based account management platform that allows the client the ability to file, track and update the dispossessory proceeding in real time as it moves from filing to execution of the Writ of Possession.  Our attorneys handle dispossessory hearings and litigation involving landlord tenant matters across the state including matters in state and superior court as well as bankruptcy court.

An integral component of the firm’s landlord tenant practice includes providing assistance to clients in formulating best practices and procedures in the operation and management of the rental portfolio.  Our firm has developed compliance manuals regarding best practices for property and leasing managers, and our attorneys present these materials in a seminar format as a training tool for property managers and leasing agents. Our team is also called upon regularly to review and provide recommendations regarding lease forms, addendums, and notices in compliance with Georgia law.

Our attorneys provide the highest level of customer service while recognizing the importance of resolving landlord tenant matters quickly and efficiently without delay to protect our client’s investment in the property.

Key Services:

  • Web based client account management platform

  • Dedicated  team of paralegals and administrative support

  • Hearing attendance across the state of Georgia

  • Litigation support for disputes regarding security deposits, latent defects and bankruptcy matters

  • Review and recommendations regarding Section 8 housing and dispossessory matters

  • Fair Housing Act Seminar

  • Landlord Tenant Best Practice and Procedure Seminar

  • The Impact of Bankruptcy on Dispossessory Seminar

Mixed-Use Developments

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The Mixed-Use Development Practice at Morris, Manning & Martin has played an integral role in providing innovative and unique legal services to developers, owners and investors of some of the most significant mixed-use developments in the southeastern United States. As lead counsel in these dynamic deals, our lawyers have counseled and represented clients in all aspects of the acquisition, development, leasing, financing and structuring of their mixed-use projects.

Comprehensive Representation

The firm’s Mixed-Use Development Practice is comprised of a diverse and seasoned team of lawyers who are representative of the tremendous breadth of Morris, Manning & Martin. The practice’s members have extensive experience in hotel, restaurant and resort development, joint ventures, public/private partnerships, tax structuring, environmental matters, employment and labor issues, intellectual property rights, real estate technology issues, transportation matters, utility issues, condominium formation and governance, owners’ association formation and structuring, and construction and permanent financing matters.

Proven Experience

The Mixed-Use Development Practice has served as primary counsel for the developers of a number of the most celebrated mixed-use real estate developments in the Southeast. We have the resources and experience to manage, coordinate and complete all legal aspects of any mixed-use project. Our clients range from sophisticated mega-developers to smaller scale traditional mixed-use projects. Our lawyers regularly advise developers regarding the governing declaration documentation for mixed-use projects and associated parking facility and transportation issues. We have worked with the EPA and state environmental agencies on cleanup proposals and remediation plans, negotiated with state departments and transportation officials regarding roadway and bridge improvements, and represented clients in negotiating land use restrictions or office or retail leases. Our complete range of service extends to the conclusion of the sale of the various pieces of the mixed-use development to residential, hotel or office developers.

Seamless Integration

Our mixed-use lawyers have experience working closely with their clients’ contractors, advisors and in-house lawyers, as well as various governmental officials and representatives, lenders, potential or prospective business partners and members of the community-at-large. Our lawyers are committed to helping clients achieve their business goals and objectives by implementing effective strategies that will ensure both short and long-term success.

Key Services:

  • Acquisition
  • Association formation & structuring
  • Construction
  • Development
  • Environmental matters
  • Financing
  • Joint ventures
  • Land use restrictions
  • Leasing
  • Parking & transportation issues
  • Public & private partnerships
  • Structuring

Private Equity Single Family Rental Investments

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Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP represents several major private equity firms purchasing single family new construction and existing residential property in Georgia with the intention of renting the property.  Our attorneys are knowledgeable and experienced in this niche area and offer complete representation for the private equity firm entering the Georgia real estate investment market.

Our attorneys are experienced in the unique characteristics and challenges of the single family residential investment and rental model of property ownership.

Key services:

  • Represent clients in bulk acquisition and disposition of of investment property
  • Contract drafting and negotiation for bulk acquisitions and dispositions
  • Closing document drafting and review
  • Representation of client in securitization of investment portfolio
  • Represent client in matters involving  building code violations relating to condition or maintenance of the property
  • Represent clients in landlord/tenant matters, including dispossessory and eviction actions
  • Review and revision of rental leasing agreements
  • Review of restrictive covenants with emphasis on leasing restrictions and resolution of any post-acquisition covenant issues

Real Estate Capital Markets (REITs)

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The Real Estate Capital Markets Practice at Morris, Manning & Martin serves clients in accessing the capital markets. Our lawyers have assisted clients in raising billions of dollars for deployment in real estate ventures. We represent real estate developers and operating companies, financial institutions, pension funds, institutional investors, investment advisors and asset managers with respect to their real estate investments, both in the U.S. and abroad. Our investment and development work touches every real estate asset class, including affordable housing, brownfield, condominium, hotel, industrial/distribution, mixed-use, multifamily, office, resort, retail, student housing, and timber.

Market Innovators

As dealmakers and innovators, our Real Estate Capital Markets Practice routinely structures, negotiates, documents and closes private and public equity offerings for REITs, real estate limited partnerships, timber funds, strategic joint ventures, debt funds, tax credit funds, bond financings and UPREITs. We add a comprehensive knowledge of the real estate industry, key industry contacts and a multidisciplinary approach to the sophisticated legal and financial issues that drive complex real estate transactions. Because of the depth of our practice, we bring our clients practical knowledge of the current thinking on complex securities, tax, environmental, bankruptcy, ERISA and technology concerns that drive deals.

Collaborative Synergy

Our lawyers look beyond just the legal issues facing our clients in order to understand and counsel our clients on the critical business issues confronting them. By doing so, we become valued business partners. In our Real Estate Capital Markets Practice, we live by the credo that our clients’ success is the only true measure of our success. We are with our clients for the long term as they grow and diversify in order to meet the challenges of an ever-changing and increasingly competitive market environment. We are leaders in the field, crafting unique legal solutions to complex issues. We add value to our clients’ businesses with our focus on strategic relationships and our ability to use our goodwill with regulators and other business leaders to our clients’ advantage. We facilitate critical introductions and ongoing communication between sources of capital and key development partners.

Transaction Guidance

Drawing on our broad and diverse experience, we are able to design and implement cutting-edge deal structures. Because we represent some of the nation’s largest financial institutions, pension funds, timber funds, institutional investors, investment advisors and asset managers, we know what the markets will accept and can advise our clients accordingly. Whether conducting a $3.3 billion REIT public offering, buying, capitalizing and financing a $300 million destination golf resort development community, handling all aspects of a $250 million in-town brownfield mixed-use multiphase development, handling installment sales of large-scale timberland dispositions, or representing a multibillion-dollar institutional investment fund in its investments and tax planning in offshore hotel and condominium resorts, our lawyers bring an unparalleled level of experience to the full spectrum of real estate transactions.

Public Funds

Our attorneys represent REITs, closed-end funds, interval funds, and business development companies, as well as affiliated investment advisers, unaffiliated investment sub-advisers and underwriters in their interactions with the SEC, FINRA, and state regulators. On the transactional side, our attorneys assist our public fund clients in raising capital through the drafting of registration statements or offering circulars, preparing or reviewing compliance materials, and other matters required by the federal securities laws.  We also assist our public fund clients in the preparation and review of periodic reports filed pursuant to the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 or the Investment Company Act of 1940.  On the regulatory side, our attorneys prepare or review board materials and reports to stockholders, provide advice relating to fund governance matters, draft exemptive and no action relief requests, and advise clients on technical matters relating to the Investment Company Act of 1940 and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, as well as requirements related to qualifying as a regulated investment company (RIC). In addition to representing numerous REITs and real estate funds, our attorneys have represented listed and non-listed offerings of BDCs, closed-end funds and interval funds, both as issuer’s counsel and as counsel to the underwriters.   

Securities Regulatory Compliance

Funds and other alternative investment vehicles of all types, as well as their advising and managing entities and placement agents,can require detailed analysis to determine the impact of potential regulatory and registration requirements under the Investment Company Act of 1940, the Securities Act of 1933, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.  In addition, many types of investment vehicles, including publicly registered but non-listed REITs and BDCs, must register their securities under the Blue Sky laws of each state in which offers and sales are made, and their offerings are subject to heightened scrutiny by FINRA.  Our lawyers understand the multiple layers of regulation and are able to navigate clients through them effectively and efficiently.  For our issuer clients, we also assist in developing robust compliance policies and procedures to ensure compliance with the federal securities laws, including a compliance manual, code of ethics, valuation policies and procedures, and co-investment guidelines.

Full Cycle Representation

MMM’s Real Estate Capital Markets attorneys assist REIT clients in every aspect of their operations, from formation to exit strategy. Our team has assisted REIT clients with listing on a public exchange, structuring a sale or merger of the entire portfolio, and managing an orderly sale of properties and assets. For example, our team recently represented a non-listed REIT in its acquisition of a real estate investment platform and subsequent listing on the NYSE, a transaction valued at over $12 billion. Our attorneys also served as special counsel to the publicly listed REIT in its subsequent merger with another publicly listed REIT, a transaction with an estimated value of $21.5 billion, the largest in its sector. The MMM team also recently advised a special committee of a listed REIT board of directors in a potential merger transaction. In these types of transactions, our team advises on all aspects, including unique tax and corporate governance matters. Whether representing the external advisors, special committees, or the REIT itself, our team works closely with our clients to select the best disposition option or combination of options that maximizes shareholder value.

Key Services: 

  • Blind pools
  • Bond financing
  • Credit enhanced financing
  • Debt funds
  • Direct participation programs
  • Down REITs
  • Follow-on offerings
  • Industrial development
  • Initial public offerings
  • Listed REITs
  • Non-listed REITs
  • Partnerships & joint ventures
  • Private REITs
  • Private placements
  • Public funds
  • Real estate funds
  • REIT M&A
  • Syndicated loans
  • Tax allocation bonds
  • Tax credit funds
  • Tax-exempt development
  • Timber REITs
  • UPREITs

Real Estate Development & Finance

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The Commercial Real Estate Development & Finance Practice at Morris, Manning & Martin is one of the key original practices of the firm. For almost four decades, our lawyers have represented real estate developers and investors in every aspect of commercial real estate, including including fund formation, zoning and other land use matters, acquisition, debt and equity financing, development and construction, environmental strategies, leasing, operation and disposition. The Commercial Real Estate Practice is listed in Chambers USA, a leading professional services ranking organization.

We are experienced in every stage of the real estate cycle. Our clients include real estate investment trusts, institutional investors, pension funds and pension fund advisers, private equity, opportunity funds, commercial banks, governments, statutory bodies, investment banks, industrial banks, insurance companies, real estate holding companies, developers and corporations of every kind. Because we see deals from all sides and know how they work from the inside, we add value to the transaction for our clients. Understanding the business of our clients enables us to provide services tailored to their needs.

Our Real Estate team's close cooperation with the firm's litigation, bankruptcy and insolvency, private equity, environmental, project finance, public sector, construction, tax and other practices enables us to deliver comprehensive services for virtually every kind of real estate need a client might have.

Multifaceted Approach

Because our lawyers are familiar with all major classes of real estate, we bring a broad range of experience to each project. Many of the projects for which we have acted as lead counsel are of national significance. Our investment fund and developer clients benefit from our sophisticated knowledge in structuring debt facilities and equity offerings. Examples of the creativity and originality of our team include the award-winning Atlantic StationTM in Atlanta, Georgia, and the negotiation of infrastructure solutions leading to the successful development of the 2,100-acre Reunion mixed-use resort adjacent to Disney World in Orlando.

Solution Oriented Team

Clients gain from our Real Estate Practice’s multidisciplinary approach. Our lawyers bring to bear both industry expertise and legal experience in addressing environmental, tax, securities, creditors’ rights, affordable housing, employment and intellectual property concerns. When needed, our experienced litigators are called upon to resolve disputes in the courtroom or through alternative dispute resolution.

Building Together

Our goal is to create a lasting partnership with our clients. We serve as an extension of our clients’ goodwill and conduct ourselves accordingly. On every project we work with our clients to pass successfully through the minefield of regulatory, environmental and community issues that must be navigated to achieve success. As our clients grow, we are there with creative and productive solutions drawn from years of experience in a sophisticated practice of national stature. At Morris, Manning & Martin, our Real Estate Development & Finance Practice continues to grow and flourish by remembering at all times that ultimately our clients’ success is the only true measure of our success.

Key Services:

  • Acquisitions
  • Affordable housing developments
  • Bond financing
  • Brownfield redevelopments
  • Conservation easements
  • Debt & equity financing
  • Development & construction
  • Environmental strategies/solutions
  • Hospitality
  • Industrial
  • Master planned communities
  • Medical properties
  • Mixed-use developments
  • Multi-family developments
  • Office development
  • Office, industrial & retail leasing
  • Partnerships & joint ventures
  • Real estate litigation
  • Residential & office condominiums
  • Resorts & golf course communities
  • Retail development
  • Tax structuring & tax-free exchanges
  • Timberland
  • Workouts
  • Zoning and land use

Real Estate Litigation

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Because Commercial Real Estate transactions often involve multiple parties, large sums of capital, long-term contracts and complex ownership structures, litigation is a very real possibility. For the benefit of our clients, Morris, Manning & Martin’s (MMM’s) national Real Estate Litigation Practice combines the firm’s extensive real estate knowledge with our broad litigation experience to provide our clients with value-added and industry-focused representation.

Commercial Real Estate

Developers, commercial landlords, owners, real-estate partnerships, limited partners and REITs are among those we represent in a wide range of real-estate disputes. We handle matters concerning real estate partnership interests, commercial office building appraisals, construction defects, contested easements, environmental, land use and zoning disputes, and disputes between lenders, owners and developers of office buildings, industrial sites, multi-family and multi-use properties, hotels, shopping centers, and residential communities.

Working in unison, MMM’s litigators and real estate attorneys efficiently assess the root cause of the dispute and diagnose the best path forward to provide our clients with clarity, closure and the best financial outcome possible.

In addition to MMM’s commercial real estate litigation experience, MMM possesses a number of highly skilled and experienced attorneys focused on specialty litigation/dispute resolution issues important to the real estate sector, including Environmental, Construction, Zoning & Land Use, and Eminent Domain.

Environmental

MMM’s Environmental Practice develops mechanisms through which environmentally impacted properties can be purchased, financed, redeveloped and sold in an increasingly challenging market. Our excellent service and skills are evidenced by the practice’s continuous ranking in Chambers USA, a leading legal services ranking publication. The practice’s key services include environmental insurance negotiations & claims; environmental litigation; environmental permitting; litigation, arbitration, mediation and alternative dispute resolution in all state and federal courts and forums; negotiating risk allocation of environmental costs and liabilities; negotiations of remediation agreements; and negotiations with state & federal regulators.

Construction

At MMM, we understand the technical, business and legal issues inherent in the multidimensional construction process. Our Construction lawyers assure that developments proceed with our clients’ best interests in mind. Our key services include bid protests and procurement disputes; design, permitting and development of construction projects; design, engineering and construction contracts and related documents; and, mediation, alternative dispute resolution, arbitration and litigation of construction issues and disputes.

Construction projects involve a variety of parties, each having a different role in the permitting, procurement, design, implementation, completion and operation of a project. Our Construction lawyers represent each of the participants in the process, including owners, developers, lenders, bonding companies, construction managers, contractors, architects, engineers, subcontractors and suppliers. We understand construction from each distinct perspective and are able to leverage that knowledge to assist clients in accomplishing their overall business objectives.

Zoning & Land Use

MMM’s Zoning & Land Use Practice is the first choice among property owners, developers, corporate and institutional users, and investors who demand the most effective representation. Our lawyers are at the forefront of every aspect of land use, zoning, permitting, eminent domain, property rights, telecommunications, environmental and other development-related regulatory issues that may arise in municipal and county jurisdictions in Georgia.

Our lawyers are experienced and well positioned to address issues related to special land use permits, rezonings, variances and special exceptions, impact fees, zoning modifications, text amendments, and interpretations of zoning ordinances and related comprehensive future development maps. We have successfully represented clients with regard to development regional impact (DRIs), tree preservation ordinances, zoning feasibility studies, traffic studies and other land use-related issues.

Eminent Domain

The lawyers in our Eminent Domain & Condemnation Practice have experience representing property owners and condemning authorities in matters relating to all types of property, including multiuse, business, industrial, residential and unimproved acreage. Our key services include direct condemnation, eminent domain acquisitions, inverse condemnation, and representing property owners & condemning authorities.

Residential Real Estate

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The Residential Real Estate Development & Finance Practice at Morris, Manning & Martin is one of the key original practices of the firm. For over three decades, our lawyers have represented residential real estate lenders, sellers, buyers, developers, builders, investors, brokers and agents in every aspect of residential real estate, including acquisition, development, construction and consumer loan financing and the creation and documentation of development structures such as subdivisions, townhomes, condominiums and mixed-use and resort communities.

Our lawyers sustain one of the most significant residential real estate practices in the Southeast. Our practice encompasses all areas and types of residential real estate transactions. We represent many of the region’s largest lenders and developers (in the past several years closing development transactions valued in excess of $2 billion), handle the sale of hundreds of foreclosed and other residential REO properties owned by lenders, and preside over thousands of residential loan closings. Our attorneys and staff are familiar with the special needs of foreclosed properties and have streamlined procedures, technology and systems in place that facilitate regular client updates, prompt attention to and resolution of title issues and smooth, timely closings. We also provide assistance with the creation of development documents for planned communities and the review and assessment of the development status of partially developed communities for lenders and investors.

Representative Clients and Transactions

  • Representation of investor purchasing over $3 billion of loans on distressed residential properties in various phases of development throughout the Southeastern U.S.
  • Representation of one of the Southeast’s largest lenders in the sale of their bank-owned residential properties
  • Representation of many of the Southeast’s community banks and developers in loan workouts, debt resolution and dispositions
  • Approved closing attorney for almost all banks and mortgage companies in the Southeastern U.S.

Solution-Oriented Team

We understand a client’s desire for high-quality legal services provided in a responsive, timely and efficient manner. Our lawyers are devoted to meeting these requirements while maintaining strong internal review and quality control, in a practice designed to meet a client’s need for seamless and attentive service. Our lawyers sustain one of the most significant residential real estate practices in the Southeastern U.S. and maintain accessible offices located throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area, as well as Savannah, Raleigh-Durham (RTP), and Washington D.C. Our knowledgeable lawyers deliver cost-effective legal services ranging from basic home closings to sophisticated, high-end negotiations and transactions. We are active in the Georgia Real Estate Closing Lawyers Association, the Georgia Association of Mortgage Bankers, the Mortgage Brokers Association, the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), the Atlanta Board of Realtors, and the Urban Land Institute (ULI). MMM lawyers are also active members of their communities, leaders in national, state and local bar associations and serve on the boards of various businesses and organizations that operate across a variety of industry sectors. However, despite the firm’s wide-reaching connections, knowledge and years of experience, at Morris, Manning & Martin we recognize that ultimately the only true measure of our success is your success.

Key Services:

  • Community associations
  • Condominiums (new & conversions)
  • Construction loan closings
  • Consumer loan closings
  • Contract drafting & review
  • Foreclosures
  • Home sales
  • Land acquisition & development
  • Loan closings
  • Private equity single family rental investments
  • Refinancing Regulatory compliance
  • Relocation services
  • REO closings
  • Residential development
  • Resort development
  • Subdivisions, townhomes & mixed-use developments
  • Title examinations
  • Title agency -- the issuance of title insurance

Social Infrastructure & Public Private Partnerships (P3s)

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Successful social infrastructure projects need comprehensive legal advice and counsel from attorneys who have the market knowledge, technical and regulatory experience, and project management skills to support all aspects of the public private partnership (P3).  Our attorneys have extensive experience with the entire P3 process, from planning, procurement, development, permitting and financing, through design, construction and operation. This institutional knowledge enables our team to deliver creative, cost-effective and comprehensive solutions for the development of social infrastructure projects.

Our team uses a multidisciplinary, collaborative approach among many of the firm’s practice areas, including P3 and Infrastructure, Real Estate, Environmental, Construction, Tax, Government Contracts and Healthcare.  This allows us to bring industry depth and specialization to benefit our clients in the development of social infrastructure projects.  As a firm founded on real estate nearly 40 years ago, the firm’s Real Estate Development & Finance practice is a particular asset for the development of social infrastructure and P3 projects.  Our firm has closed hundreds of real estate transactions throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, Mexico and the Bahamas.  Our depth in all aspects of real estate law helps us guide our social infrastructure clients through the minefield of regulatory, environmental, financing and community issues and challenges that must be navigated to develop and close a successful project. 

We have successfully represented all types of clients on social infrastructure projects, including municipalities and public agencies, private developers, and financial institutions.  Our team advises on all phases of the project, from the initial concept, structuring and development, through procurement, financing, permitting, construction, operation and beyond.  In addition, our attorneys have been influential in structuring the transactions and drafting and negotiating sophisticated contracts that are used to help structure and complete these complicated transactions.

Our social infrastructure work includes P3 and other infrastructure projects in a variety of sectors, including:

  • Social welfare and housing facilities (e.g., social/affordable housing, extra care housing, and adult social care facilities);
  • Healthcare and medical facilities (e.g., hospitals, treatment centers and other health facilities);
  • Educational and research buildings and systems (e.g., elementary and secondary schools, universities, colleges, and research institutions); and
  • Civic and other facilities (e.g., convention and conference centers, hotels, etc.). 

In these projects, our attorneys provide advice to public and private clients during all phases of the infrastructure and P3 project implementation process, including:

  • Initial conception and feasibility assessment;
  • Procurement, including structuring, drafting and assisting in preparation or review of responses to RFQs and RFPs;
  • Contract drafting and negotiation, including design-build, operation & maintenance, concession and development agreements;
  • Site acquisition and development plans;
  • Environmental clearance and permitting;
  • Financial review and closing, including commercial and financial closures involving both short-term and permanent financings;  
  • Litigation and dispute resolution, including issues relating to construction and/or operation; and
  • Restructuring, refinancing, insolvency and other issues at critical junctures throughout the operations phase.

 

Our team also regularly advises clients on regulatory requirements, helps advise on matters to ensure compliance with environmental laws and public agencies’ regulations, assists in structuring and securing financing, drafts and negotiates concession, construction (design-build) and operation and maintenance agreements, provides counsel on tax issues that arise in connection with concession agreements and large infrastructure projects, and defends projects in litigation.  Through our experience working with public sector clients and the team’s established relationships, we add significant value in assessing the political landscape and risk, and in advising and communicating with key decision makers within federal, state and local governments throughout the project lifecycle.

Timberland

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The Timberland Investments and Forest Products Practice at Morris, Manning & Martin consists of an integrated team of experienced lawyers from multiple disciplines that focus on the legal needs of businesses, financial institutions, individuals and investors in the timber and forest products industries. Lawyers in our Timberland Investments and Forest Products Practice primarily pull from the Corporate and Commercial Real Estate Practices and have extensive experience in the application of tax, fund formation and investor relations to the timberland and forest products industries.

Industry Focus

We believe that a thorough understanding of our clients’ operations and long-term business strategy is essential to effective representation. Our industry background, knowledge, experience and contacts are invaluable in serving the needs of our clients.

Full-Service Representation

Our lawyers represent investors, owners and managers in timber transactions involving millions of acres of timberland throughout the U.S., South America, Africa and Asia. We work with companies and institutions nationwide in the ownership, operation and finance of corporate owned real estate. We also address issues related to capturing the tax advantages of timber investments, depletion issues, planning for exempt investors, “pass through” vehicles and deferral opportunities, as well as various timber taxation issues ranging from the valuation of timberland for the purpose of gift tax and charitable contributions, to the allocation of basis of purchased land and timber, to the loss of mature timber from natural causes and infestation.

TIMO Representation

The central element of our Tmber Practice is the representation of TIMOs, which involves three primary components: (1) transactional corporate and real estate advisory services, (2) client liaison services and (3) compliance services. Transactional services include advising on deal structure and negotiating and coordinating acquisitions and dispositions. Client liaison services involve primarily the capital formation process: negotiating investment management agreements, handling private placement offerings of collective investment funds and rendering advice on choice of entity and formation of investment vehicles. Lastly, compliance services include organization maintenance and tax advice on the reporting of operations.

Much of our TIMO representation is international in scope, as an increasingly greater proportion of capital sources are foreign in nature and a significant number of the timberland acquisitions are in foreign countries. Our lawyers have extensive networks within most of the countries where our clients operate and plan to operate and have developed a strong comparative knowledge of the legal and tax systems of those countries.

REIT Representation

As the popularity of timber as an asset class has grown, interest in providing timber investment opportunities at the “retail” level has emerged. Changes to the tax code have made the use of real estate investment trusts (REITs) a viable option for accessing retail investor capital for timberland investments, as the capital raised by REITs are used to acquire timberland and distressed forest products companies.

Foreign Experience

As timber investors have expanded their investment horizons overseas, we are called upon regularly by clients to assist them with investments in Central and South America and around the world (including Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay, South Africa, Hungary, Romania and Latvia). We are generally responsible in these deals for the selection and monitoring of local counsel, negotiation of basic deal terms, choice of entity and tax structure analysis and the overall responsibility for ensuring that the transactions are conducted in accordance with our clients' corporate objectives, basic policies and core philosophies.

Supply Agreement Representation

We have from inception represented clients in the negotiation of wood and fiber supply agreements as a regular part of our practice. In the past few years, however, we have prepared and negotiated supply agreements for energy plantations in Central and Eastern Europe, established biomass projects and supply agreements in Brazil, and negotiated biomass supply agreements between U.S. producers and European buyers.

Key Services:

  • Advise clients with respect to large domestic and international timberland acquisitions
  • Provide structural and tax advice on both domestic and international timberland transactions
  • Advise clients as to the formation and operation of international timberland investment funds
  • Represent institutional (including REITS and pension funds) and high net worth individual investors with respect to all phases of the formation and operation of international timberland investment funds and other such domestic and foreign timberland investments
  • Regularly represent financial institutions providing structured finance and other financial solutions to the forest products industry

 

Zoning & Land Use

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Morris, Manning & Martin’s Zoning and Land Use Practice is the first choice among property owners, developers, corporate and institutional users, and investors who demand the most effective representation. Our lawyers are at the forefront of every aspect of land use, zoning, permitting, eminent domain, property rights, telecommunications, environmental and other development-related regulatory issues that may arise in municipal and county jurisdictions.

Overview

When retained by a client, MMM identifies the key issue(s) of the matter brought before us. Together, we shape and pursue a cost-effective, well-timed strategy in furtherance of our client’s ultimate business objectives. While much of our advice is based upon experience with proven methods of success, we continue to implement creative solutions in reaction to the ever-changing business and political climate which shape zoning and land use.

Our lawyers are experienced and well positioned to address issues related to special land use permits, rezonings, variances and special exceptions, impact fees, zoning modifications, text amendments, and interpretations of zoning ordinances and related comprehensive future development maps. We have successfully represented clients with regard to development regional impact (DRIs), tree preservation ordinances, zoning feasibility studies, traffic studies and other land use-related issues and, when necessary, are able to utilize the force of MMM’s Commercial Real Estate Litigation team to defend/pursue our clients' interests.

Connected

MMM’s lawyers have developed close relationships -- cultivated over decades -- with local land use planning staff, development authorities, elected officials, judges, and other governmental bodies and boards involved in the planning and approval process. We know and understand the concerns of key metro-Atlanta neighborhood organizations (and their leaders) and have presented literally hundreds of proposals to them, while simultaneously negotiating zoning conditions that allow for successful petitions. We have appeared before dozens of local government boards to secure approvals related to every asset class in real estate, including large retail shopping centers, mixed-use communities, residential subdivisions, waste transfer stations, industrial complexes, and multifamily communities.