Welcome to the Real Property Law Section (RPLS) of the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA). We are knowledgeable and involved attorneys who encourage new members and law students to join the RPLS to enjoy its benefits and participate in its committees. You can join online today!

Currently, we have more than 3,800 members and thirty committees. Each committee devotes itself to a specific practice area within the real estate community such as Construction; Real Estate Finance; Condominiums and Cooperatives and Foreclosures, to name but a few. After joining the RPLS, you may join a committee by going to the Section Committee’s page on this website and contacting the Chair or Co-Chairs of that committee.

The RPLS’s highly active online Community is a vital resource for practitioners to address practice questions quickly and thoroughly. In 2020, there have been over 3,100 member posts with multiple responses to most. Often, the responding member will provide a case or a statutory reference fully addressing the question posed. The RPLS Community can also provide access to an attorney with a particular specialty necessary to assist you with a client or matter.

RPLS members also receive the Real Property Law Journal (RPLJ) published quarterly each year. The RPLJ has articles on a range of real estate topics including contracts, condominiums, recent decisions, and ethics. There is also a regular column on foreclosures provided by Bruce T. Bergman. Section members are encouraged to submit articles for publication. See the Publications portion of this website for more information about the RPLJ as well as an archive of prior articles and contact information for the editors.

The RPLS regularly offers high quality CLE programs. Members receive weekly emails alerting them to CLE events. For detailed information on upcoming CLEs, including program overviews and faculty listings, see the Events Calendar on this website.

Last but not least, the Real Property Law Section participates in NYSBA’s Annual Meeting in New York City each January. The annual meeting includes CLEs, rounds of committee meetings and many opportunities to meet and network with Section members. The RPLS also has an annual Summer weekend Meeting where members can gather in a relaxed atmosphere, learn from and get to know one another. Recent Summer Meetings have been held at resorts in New Hampshire and in rural Vermont. Members are encouraged to bring their partners, spouses and other family members to enjoy the destination.

The RPLS’s mission cuts across all aspects of real property law and includes:

  • Commenting on and encouraging appropriate legislation;
  • Working with title insurance companies, brokers, surveyors and other related industry professionals to improve transactional practices;
  • Identifying problems in the real estate industry and working to solve them;
  • Educating the public about the attorney’s role in protecting their interests in real property transactions and also, when necessary,

We look forward to more of our members becoming involved in our Committees and forging relationships with new members who always have much to contribute.


 

Contact the Real Property Law Section Liaison

To learn more about this Section, please contact Amy Jasiewicz
[email protected]
(518) 487-5682

Please do not contact the Section liaison with a request for legal advice or an attorney referral. You can instead visit our ‘Public Resources’ or ‘Lawyer Referral Service’ page for this type of request.

Michelle Wildgrube

Michelle H. Wildgrube, Esq.

Michelle H. Wildgrube of Schenectady is the new chair of the section. A principal of Cioffi Slezak Wildgrube, she concentrates her practice in elder law, estate planning and real property law.

A 28-year member of the association, Wildgrube most recently served as first vice-chair of the section. She is vice-chair of the State Bar’s Committee on Membership.

She also is a member of the Business Law, General Practice and Women in Law sections.

Wildgrube graduated from Rutgers College and earned her law degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law.

Online Community

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The N.Y. Real Property Law Journal features substantive articles relating to the practice of real property law on various topics including property transactions, leases, zoning, disclosure, and cooperatives and condominiums. Also included are a regular column entitled, “Bergman on Mortgage Foreclosures” as well as updates on Section news, programs and events. Co-edited by members of the Publications Committee, with editorial assistance from a St. John’s Law School student editorial board, the N.Y. Real Property Law Journal is published by the Real Property Law Section and distributed to Section Members free of charge.

The Journal is published as a benefit for members of the Real Property Law Section and is copyrighted by the New York State Bar Association.

The N.Y. Real Property Law Journal encourages article submissions on topics of interest to members of the Section. Writing an article for a NYSBA Section publication is a great way to get your name out in the legal community and advertise your knowledge. Our authors are respected state-wide for their legal expertise in such areas as property transactions, leases, zoning, disclosure and cooperatives and condominiums.

Author Guidelines

NYSBA has created comprehensive author guidelines, with information regarding our reprint policy, style guidelines, and obtaining MCLE Author Credits.

Explanatory Notes Accompanying Revisions to Standard Form Condo Contract

 


Local Practice Guide for Residential Real Estate Transactions

Even though we all practice law in the same state, many aspects of a residential real estate transaction differ depending on where a property is located.  Particularly Upstate, closing customs and practices vary widely from one county to the next.  These practices include whether a contract is drafted by a realtor or an attorney, if a realtor-drafted contract is subject to attorney approval or disapproval, the length of the required title search, who orders and pays for title searches and even the type of deed.

An attorney who works on a transaction outside of his/her own home county may be at a disadvantage because local attorneys, title agents and realtors have different expectations about how the transaction will be conducted.  Conversely, a local attorney may have difficulty convincing an attorney from outside of the area that “this is how we do things here.” This Local Practice Guide is designed to help bridge this gap.  The Guide is organized on a county by county basis and will serve as a reference to the various local real estate customs and practices as well as provide a guide to local mapping and tax reference resources.

This Guide is provided exclusively as a benefit of membership in the NYSBA Real Property Law Section.

 


Real Property Law Section Diversity & Inclusion Plan – January 2021
Real Property Law Section New Section Committee Chair Guide
Real Property Law Section District Representative Guide
Real Property Law Section Bylaws – Updated 2018
Resolution of the Real Property Law Section Concerning Real Estate Closings During COVID-19

Legislation

Attorney Professionalism Award

Each year, the Real Property Law Section has honored an outstanding individual real estate practitioner with its Professionalism Award. The Section’s Award Committee will be seeking nominations this summer for the 2021 award, to be presented virtually during the Section’s Annual Meeting in January 2022.

Outstanding Community Contributor Award

The Section created the Outstanding Community Contributor Award to recognize members who have made significant contributions to the Community, and to express its appreciation. The Section’s Award Committee will be seeking nominations this summer for the 2021 award, to be presented virtually during the Section’s Annual Meeting in January 2022.

Real Property Law Section Annual Student Writing Competition

The Real Property Law Section sponsors an annual Student Writing Competition, open to all students who are candidates for the JD or LLM degree at an accredited law school in New York State during the year in which the article is submitted.

Scholarships

The Real Property Law Section will be accepting applications this summer for its two law student scholarships in the amount of $5,000 each. The scholarships will be awarded virtually at the Section’s Annual Meeting in January 2022.

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