Most lawsuits are resolved by a monetary damages award issued from the defendant to the plaintiff. This is a sum of money that is paid either in lump sum or over time, whose purpose is to compensate the plaintiff for any financial losses caused by the defendant.

In contrast to legal remedies are "equitable remedies". These are remedies that involve the defendant taking certain actions or refraining from certain conduct. These can be more difficult to enforce, since they require a regulation of the parties’ conduct.

What Are Some Examples of Real Estate Equitable Remedies?

In the majority of real estate lawsuits, a real estate contract is at the center of the conflict. In particular, a common breach of contract in a real estate setting is where one party will not transfer the deed or tile to the party as agreed upon in a contract.

For instance, it can sometimes happen that a sale occurs, but the deed holder fails to transfer title to the buyer. They may have discovered information that makes them believe that they should transfer title to an heir instead. Here, the court might order specific performance, which requires the plaintiff to complete their contract duties. In this case, their contract duty might be to deliver the deed. Failure to comply with the court order can result in a violation.

Another example of a real estate equitable remedy is that of an injunction. An injunction requires the defendant to take action. The prescribed action doesn’t need to be listed in the contract terms; however, the judge needs to determine the required action. For instance, if the real estate dispute involves the construction of an additional room, the court might issue an injunction requiring the defendant to complete construction of the room.

Can I Get Both Monetary Damages and an Equitable Remedy?

Usually, if the plaintiff requests for a monetary damages award, they have excluded themselves from obtaining equitable relief. In other words, the plaintiff can usually only choose one or the other. However, there are certain circumstances where the judge may issue a combination of legal and equitable remedies; these are very specific situations that require certain proofs and legal interpretations.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Equitable Remedies?

Real estate issues can often involve a number of different remedies for the plaintiff. You may wish to hire real estate lawyer if you need to seek a remedy for a real estate issue. Your attorney can provide you with legal advice and can guide you in the right direction for your claim. Also, your lawyer can represent you if you need to file a lawsuit in a court of law.