Tips For Testifying In Kansas And Missouri Courts.
  • Published: June 22, 2021

Witness Testimony Tips In Kansas And Missouri Court You have a hearing or trial coming up. Please review this non-exhaustive list the night before your court date and again in the minutes leading up to your court date. These rules will assist you in providing the court with testimony in the most professional way possible. Judges and juries are very perceptive, and this list was created out of a decade of observing witnesses that either lost their case, or severely damaged their case by violating the below rules. You will not win your case by following these rules. However, violation of these rules will likely be very detrimental to the outcome of your legal proceeding: Dress nice but do not overdo it. Males should wear slacks and sport coat. Women may wear dresses, skirts or slacks. Coats for women look… Read More

How To Draft A Farm Lease.
  • Published: June 9, 2021

In any financial arrangement clearly defined expectations can be critical. It is always wise to make sure that these agreements are formalized in some sort of written document, reviewed and signed by all parties involved. Many of us appreciate the hand shake deal, but when dealing with agreements involving real estate, written documentation reduces mis-understandings and protects all parties in the event of problems. Furthermore, the negotiation process helps develop communication between the parties and allows discussion of things that might not otherwise be considered. Hat Are The Common Types Of Farm Lease Agreements? Cash Rental One of the most common types of farm leases are CASH RENTAL agreements. In other words, the tenant pays a flat rate per acre of land that they are farming. The tenant farmer assumes all of the risk, and reaps all of the rewards.… Read More

Home Owner’s Association Contracts And Disputes.
  • Published: June 7, 2021

Home owners’ associations (“HOA”) require certain and specific governing documents. As a resident in an HOA, you are entitled to access to these documents. Understanding them can help you realize not only your obligations but your protections. Most states have laws that govern the formation of home owner’s associations. Kansas has the Uniform Common Interest Owners Bill of Rights. It is contained at K.S.A. 58-4601 – 58-4623. Declarations Of Covenants, Conditions And Restrictions One of the first and most important documents to understand is the Declarations of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (“CC&R”). This document contains agreements that run with the land, which means they transfer with land ownership. In other words, a planned association developer creates these agreements or restrictions that are part of the purchase of the property for residential use. Once you sell the property, these same restrictions… Read More

Home Appraisal Fraud.
  • Published: May 24, 2021

Appraisal Fraud You recently received an appraisal on a home, and something does not seem right. The value is too high and out of whack with comparable purchases in the area. Worse still, there was a suspicious relationship between the broker, lender, and the appraiser. Perhaps you received the value of an appraisal as part of a divorce. An inflated appraisal is the linchpin of the property flipping schemes and many predatory loan schemes. Sky high appraisals are often used as evidence in many different court cases. Mortgage brokers secure inflated appraisals to persuade lenders to extend loans larger than the borrower’s income and assets justify. The consumer ends up saddled with a mortgage that may exceed the value of the home, making it impossible to refinance or to sell the home except at a loss. An appraiser may be… Read More

Property Taxes And Tax Sales.
  • Published: May 21, 2021

Most mortgage lenders require you to pay into an escrow account, and the lender, through its servicer, then pays your property taxes and insurance from that escrow account. Even if there is not enough in your escrow account, the servicer will typically pay your property taxes. You could eventually face foreclosure on your mortgage loan if you do not pay what you owe into your escrow account. Your servicer will usually do the same even if you do not have an escrow account—in that case, you face foreclosure if you do not repay the servicer for the taxes it has paid for you. On the other hand, if you own your home free and clear of a mortgage, then you are responsible for paying the property taxes on your home. Failure to do so could eventually lead to a “tax… Read More

Dicamba Drift: What Is It And What Can I Do About It?
  • Published: May 16, 2021

There is an increasingly common problem developing in rural communities. Your neighbor sprays their crops with an herbicide or pesticide and all of the sudden your crops become damaged. What is happening? And more importantly, what remedies do you have? The increase in Dicamba Drift cases is bringing more information to light. What Is Pesticide Drift? What does “drift” mean in this context? According to the EPA drift means “the movement of pesticide dust or droplets through the air at the time of application or soon after, to any site other than the area intended.” https://www.epa.gov/reducing-pesticide-drift/introduction-pesticide-drift Dicamba is a broad spectrum herbicide first approved in 1967 to kill weeds. It has come back into favor due to resistance in some weeds. Dicamba is prone to drift off target. Although the new dicamba-based herbicides are formulated to stay on the application… Read More

Skip Tracing And Cyber Tracking
  • Published: May 9, 2021

Someone owes you money, and now you can’t find them, what can you do? In a year, Titus Law Firm, LLC receives hundreds of calls from clients trying to collect on certain debts and those trying to avoid collection. Overall, understanding the process involved in skip tracing and cyber tracking may be helpful in understanding the process. Skip Tracing The very best way to track a person and/or debtor down is through a skip trace. Skip tracing is a term used by bounty hunters to describe the process of locating a person that cannot be found at their place of residence or usual hangouts. “Skip” refers to the person being searched for (derived from the term “to skip town”) and “tracing” meaning the act of locating the skip. Skip tracing is performed in stages. The first step is to verify… Read More

Unfair And/Or Deceptive Practices – Missouri
  • Published: May 3, 2021

Mo. Rev. Stat. §§ 407.010 Through 407.307 Merchandising Practices Act The Missouri Merchandising Practices Act (“MMPA”) exists to protect consumers. Missouri’s Supreme Court has observed that the unfair practices declared unlawful by the MMPA are exceedingly broad. A brief synopsis of the MMPA is provided below: Prohibited Practices Under The MMPA Deception, fraud, false pretenses, false promises, misrepresentations, unfair practices, or concealment or omission of material fact. Scope Of The MMPA Sale, lease, offer for sale or lease, attempt to sell or lease, distribution, or advertisement of any merchandise including goods, commodities, intangibles, realty or services. Also includes solicitation of funds for any charitable purpose. Exclusions Under The MMPA Advertisements by publisher, radio and television media, with no knowledge of falsity; institutions supervised by director of insurance, credit unions, or finance unless director authorizes attorney general to act or a… Read More

Unfair And/Or Deceptive Acts Or Practices – Kansas
  • Published: February 5, 2021

Kan. Stat. Ann. §§ 50-623 Through 50-640 and 50-675a through 50-679a Consumer Protection Act For all Kansans, one of the most important consumer laws is the Kansas Consumer Protection Act. Borrowing words from the Kansas Supreme Court, the Kansas Consumer Protection Act allows consumers that are harmed by deceptive or unconscionable acts or practices to act as their own “private attorney general” and take steps to protect their rights. In addition, the law allows the state attorney general and local district attorneys to take steps to protect consumers. Unfair or Deceptive Acts or Practices under the KCPA can be broken down as follows: Prohibited Practices under The KCPA Any deceptive acts or practices including but not limited to 12 enumerated prohibitions, one of which is willful concealment of material fact; unconscionable practice, determined by considering 7 enumerated factors. Scope of… Read More

Tax Foreclosure Sale And Surplus Funds
  • Published: January 25, 2021

Your home has been foreclosed on, or sold for failure to pay real estate taxes, what happens next? 2020 has been incredibly difficult for many people, and foreclosures and tax sales are likely to only go up in 2021. It is important to know that you have some rights that are seldom explained. Although, unless you can repay delinquent amounts, there may be nothing to stop the sale of property, you (or your heirs) are not completely out the equity that has accumulated in the real estate being foreclosed upon. It is frequently not shared with homeowners that if your property is sold for more than is owed to the bank or government entity seizing the property, that you (or your heirs) are entitled to any money collected in excess of the amounts owed. This can sometimes be significant money… Read More

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