Real Estate


Jesse Sharf Century City
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Alan Samson London
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Eric M. Feuerstein New York
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Erin Rothfuss San Francisco
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The Real Estate Practice Group handles the most sophisticated real estate transactions worldwide.  Our team of lawyers handles complex and challenging matters for a wide array of clients, such as the owners, developers and financiers of the largest real estate projects in the United States and Europe, both in the private and public sectors.  Practice group members are skilled in a broad spectrum of transactions that includes:

  • Real estate finance
  • Development
  • Sales and acquisitions
  • Land use and environmental matters
  • Leasing
  • Distressed asset workouts

Real estate matters may require a range of services and present varied challenges.

The Real Estate group is supplemented by the full scope of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher's legal capabilities, including corporate, bankruptcy, environmental and litigation, to provide superb representation and counsel in the following areas:  

  • Asset ownership, development and management
  • Cross-border acquisitions, dispositions, development and finance
  • Development, entitlement, land use and environmental matters
  • Lending and other financing transactions
  • Workouts

Experience and Recent Representations

Both as a complement to our representation of project owners, financiers and investors and as an independent practice area, our real estate lawyers are involved in all aspects of real estate asset ownership, development and management.  Among these matters are:

  • Commercial leasing
  • Design and construction contracts
  • Project deficiencies and their correction
  • Property, leasing and asset management contracts
  • Insurance-related issues

Our international work reaches far beyond our European offices, where we routinely lead some of the largest and most complex transactions.  Our lawyers provide counsel to developers and private equity investors on real estate development opportunities worldwide.

We are experienced with all of the attendant cross-border issues.  We work with clients to obtain financing and assist in securing the protocols necessary to provide client access to world financial markets, wherever the location of the project.  

Our experience with major infrastructure projects provides us with a vast repository of contacts experienced in international finance and real estate development, as well as local counsel and official government contacts in jurisdictions around the world.  Our global debt and equity transactions work involves numerous jurisdictions, including Panama, Costa Rica, Mexico and South Korea.

Our proficiency in matters related to real property development is second to none.  We draw on a deep experience base of guiding the legal aspects of the largest and most complex development projects.  We represent developers in all asset classes, including:

  • Office buildings
  • Business and industrial parks
  • Large-scale, single and multi-family housing projects
  • Shopping centers
  • Hotels, golf courses and other resort properties
  • Mixed-use and other condominium projects

Gibson Dunn has extensive experience advising and assisting clients seeking to obtain entitlements to develop property, responding to concerns and objections raised by city and other relevant authorities as well as other third parties, and efficiently negotiating the resolution of such issues.  Our lawyers work with members of the litigation department to minimize the risk of challenges to development projects.

Increasingly, entitlement and environmental issues are critical factors in most real estate decisions.  Our lawyers have broad experience in these areas, especially in relation to complex details of land use entitlements.  We work closely with our Environmental Litigation and Mass Tort Practice Group to help clients evaluate and avoid the pitfalls associated with the presence of environmental hazards.

Gibson Dunn has comprehensive familiarity with real estate financing and investment transactions of all types, from the standpoint of institutional lenders (conduit and balance sheet) and private investors, as well as borrowers.  Our broad client base includes:

  • Insurance companies
  • Banks
  • Pension funds
  • Opportunity funds
  • U.S. and international private companies and individuals
  • Landowners
  • Developers

We handle a wide spectrum of transaction types, such as:

  • Traditional secured lending, both conduit and balance sheet
  • Sale-leaseback transactions
  • Ground lease financing
  • Synthetic lease transactions
  • Mezzanine financings
  • Partnerships and other joint ventures

We are well-versed in developing alternative, creative solutions for our clients' specific needs on an asset-by-asset basis.

Our real estate lawyers' experience includes a significant amount of workout and restructuring of distressed loans, financings and assets.  We work with our insolvency lawyers to handle the difficult problems that arise when a project is in trouble.  We have represented a wide range of clients, including banks, private equity funds and a number of major insurance companies with distressed investments including foreclosures, workouts and restructurings in a variety of locations.