Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&A
I am a 30 year veteran of the Maryland and District of Columbia court systems.
- Business Law
- Construction Law
- Insurance Defense
- Maritime Law
- Real Estate Law
Additional Practice Area
- General Civil
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
- District of Columbia
- U.S. Supreme Court
- University of Baltimore School of Law
- J.D. | Law
- Saint Anselm College
- B.A. | Political Science
- Maryland Professionalism Center, Inc.
- Instructor, Civil Litigation
- Activities: Newly admitted lawyers in Maryland must attend a course on Professionalism and ethics. Thomas is an instructor on civility and professionalism in civil litigation.
Articles & Publications
- Bow-riding, a reckless practice and already illegal in Maryland.
- Linkedin- Thomas C. Valkenet
- Trial Reporter, "The Limited Appearance in Maryland Civil Litigation"
- The Maryland Association for Justice
Websites & Blogs
- Young & Valkenet Law Library
- Civil Litigation is a Roller Coaster!
6 March 2019
- The February 22, 2019 Manafort District of Columbia sentencing memo
23 February 2019
- We help you live your best life.
3 February 2019
- Business leads to litigation.
7 October 2018
- Let your lawyers be excellent.
22 June 2018
- Pay when paid, or pay if paid? What's in your contract?
31 May 2018
- Make your opponent take notice.
30 April 2018
- Contract forum selection clauses are generally enforceable in Maryland lawsuits.
14 December 2017
- Maryland's Construction Trust Fund Statute has obvious limits.
6 November 2017
121 Questions Answered
- Q. Can Can You Quiet Title A Estate Estate / Property With No No mortgage / Lease.. && Not Regarding Adverse Prosession
- A: Yes. A quiet title action may be brought to address any dispute over interests in real property. Adverse possession is only one of many potential disputes. You may also couple many equitable claims with demands for money damages and injunctive relief, negative and affirmative.
- Q. Does a seller have to complete and provide a property disclosure form for a renovated home that they did not reside in?
- A: Yes. Of course, the seller can also disclaim knowledge of anything by stating "as-is." The question as to actual knowledge of latent defects is the most important, however.
- Q. Can a primary borrower divest all interest in a property when they are not on the deed?
- A: If you are not on the deed, then you don't have an interest in the real property. You can remain liable for the loan if you have signed the promissory note or deed of trust as a borrower/guarantor.
- Q. Is there a Maryland law that indicates home sellers must cover cost to fix septic or well?
- A: This is a negotiated item. The standard Board of Realtors contracts have contingencies for buyer's inspections of these items. If the inspections fail, there is a negotiation over repairs, who pays, price reduction, etc. There is a point where the buyer may elect to cancel the deal if the item is not addressed to their satisfaction. Similarly, the seller may have the right to cancel if the cost is too great.
- Q. Great grandmother's property going into lien foreclosure in 2 wks. If I pay taxes, can I sell the property.
- A: You can pay, but you will be deemed a volunteer, which means nobody will have to pay you back. Your course of action is through the probate proceeding to replace the old personal representative, who failed to have the prior deed recorded, or to safe guard estate property. You may, or may not be appointed successor. Yours is not an unusual situation, except that you have also described an attorney who may have failed to act.
- Q. Is it worth pursuing a buyer who defaulted on a residential sale 2 days before closing after removing all contingencies?
- A: This is a very common situation. Buyers can elect to break a contract. The question is whether there is a penalty. In your situation, you may elect recovery of the EMD or a suit for specific performance. Your contract certainly has mandatory mediation as predicate for a lawsuit for damages, but that mediation is not necessary predicate for specific performance. You must also consider that the broker will claim commission on the enforced sale. This is a rough outline, which can change dependent on the exact language of your various contract documents and written communications.
- Q. I just became aware that my Siblings forged my name on a deed of a in 2007. I am unsure re SOL.
- A: You must sue to have the deed declared void. Now that you have discovered the forgery, you have limited time.
- Q. Myself and my brother both inherited our mothers home in 2012. I offered a buyout amount. He refused.
- A: Your use of the phrase "inherit" is not descriptive enough. Did the Estate grant a deed naming both of you as co-owners? Or are you referring to a Will giving you the house, but the title document was not executed and recorded?
- Q. Is it a requirement for a buyer to hire a real estate broker in order to buy a real estate property in Maryland?
- A: Not true. But an agent or lawyer can be useful. When the unrepresented shows interest in a residential property, the selling agent will usually try to convince the buyer to use a buyer's agent in the selling agent's own office. The other common fallacy is that you must use only the standardized Maryland Board of Realtors form contract, with little or no changes. This is wrong. There are several provisions in the standard contract that only benefit the brokers and agents, and which are detrimental to the parties. It is the agents who fight to keep the language in the contract, against the best interests of their own clients.
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