Practice Areas

Lehtinen Schultz, PLLC ("Lehtinen Schultz") is a service-oriented business law firm based in Miami, Florida. Lehtinen Schultz's attorneys serve national and international clients in connection with real estate, land use, commercial litigation and municipal matters in South Florida, including Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties. LSRCF's attorneys have a tremendous amount of experience in their respective practice areas.

Our Practice Areas Include:

Land Use, Zoning & Local Government

The Firm handles complex local governmental law, land use and environmental matters before governmental entities at the local, state, and federal levels. The Firm serves as counsel to individual property owners and corporations, as well as local government and state agencies on a broad range of matters related to the use of real estate. The Firm also serves as counsel to respondents to requests for proposals, which involves assisting with structuring the responses as well as advocacy before the reviewing bodies.

The Firm handles all aspects of real property entitlement, as well as civil litigation related to the following issues:

  • Zoning approvals
  • Amendment of local government comprehensive plans
  • Platting and site plan approval
  • Traffic impacts and mitigation
  • Proportionate Share Agreements and Impact fees
  • Development Agreements
  • Developments of regional impact
  • Due diligence review
  • Administrative and Civil land use appeals
  • Inverse Condemnation and Regulatory Takings
  • FOIA and Florida Sunshine Law Issues

Business & Commercial Litigation

The Firm focuses its business litigation practice on complex financial-based disputes in federal and state courts.

The mission of the Firm's litigators is to provide strategic advice and direction to their clients in order to lead to successful resolutions of complex financial disputes. The Firm considers its lawyers to be advisors and counselors as well as advocates. If a pre-trial solution cannot be found, the Firm has highly skilled and experienced trial lawyers ready to represent clients before judges and juries.

The Firm has represented, as plaintiffs and defendants, countries, states, corporations, and individuals before federal and state juries, trial courts, appellate courts, and arbitration panels. Its lawyers have represented clients nationwide, in almost many areas of financial and commercial law, including contractual disputes, UCC, securities, real estate, partnership and joint venture disputes, fraud, lender liability, aviation, construction, intellectual property, employment, international arbitration, administrative law, and regulatory actions.

The Firm has also been engaged to prosecute and defend numerous business torts ranging from intentional interference with contractual relationships to defamation. It has obtained injunctions and defended actions to enjoin theft of trade secrets and unfair competition. It has prosecuted and defended actions for conversion, civil theft, unfair trade practices, antitrust, RICO, and many other statutory and common law torts.

Unparalleled Trial Experience
The Firm is unparalleled in its experience in actually trying cases involving complex business disputes. The Firm has tried cases before judges and juries in such arcane and complicated legal areas as interest rate swaps, reverse repurchase transactions, lender liability, securities, partnership disputes, corporate governance issues, construction defects, and bankruptcy avoidance issues.

Receiverships and Enforcement Proceedings

The Firm’s receivership group has more than 50 years of combined experience in federal and state receivership matters.  Members of the Firm have served as federal and state equity receivers, and have also represented equity receivers, in major fraud cases at the request of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Florida Department of Financial Services, and the Florida Attorney General.  As indicated in the attached biographies, the major cases where members of the group have acted as federal equity receivers at the request of the SEC include the $315 million ESM government securities fraud, and the separate cases of Pension Fund of America, Inc., et al. ($130 million), Viatical Capital, Inc., et al. ($60 million), Medco, Inc. and SunState FX, Inc.  A member of the Firm also serves as the Conservator of the $250 million Future First Financial Group, Inc. viatical proceeding commended by the Florida Department of Financial Services.  Major matters in which the Firm has represented federal and state equity receivers include International Medical Centers (Florida Department Financial Services), VIS Holdings Corp. d/b/a VIS Auto Finance (Miami-Dade County, Florida Circuit Court auto finance company receivership) Guarantee Security Life (Florida Department of Financial Services); FTC v. Slim America (FTC); Unique Gems International Corp. (State Receiver); Future First Financial Group, Inc. (Florida Department of Financial Services); Pension Fund of America, Inc., et al. (SEC); Viatical Capital, Inc., et al. (SEC); and SunState FX, Inc. (SEC).  The Firm also represented a large group of investors in connection with an $85 million claim in the Mutual Benefits Corp. federal receivership.

Real Estate

The Firm represents foreign and domestic institutions, lenders, developers, investors, brokers, and asset managers in virtually all types of real estate transactions. The Firm has the experience and depth to handle the most complex real estate matters throughout the State of Florida. Our Real Estate services include:

Leasing

We regularly handle the leasing of space in office buildings, warehouses, and shopping centers for landlords and tenants.  Our attorneys have handled the leasing of more than 2,000,000 square feet of commercial office space and retail space.  Leases have ranged in size from small space users to headquarter leases for large banking institutions. We are experienced in sale-leasebacks and long-term ground leases.  We are able to structure such leases in a manner which protects the lessee’s long-term investment and facilitates financing.

Purchases and Sales

We represent buyers and sellers of residential and commercial projects, hotels, office buildings, industrial facilities, apartment buildings, shopping centers, theaters, and other types of real estate.  We can assist with the structuring of the acquisition entity and the strategy for negotiating the acquisition or disposition on the most favorable terms.  We are active with due diligence investigations to determine the suitability of the asset to meet the client’s objectives.

Real Estate Brokers

We represent several real estate brokers with respect to commission agreements, commission disputes, and providing advice as to their rights and obligations.

Real Estate Development

Our attorneys handle major commercial, residential, and mixed-use projects from acquisition of the land through the planning of the project and obtaining final development approvals.  We have represented some of the largest developers in the country with respect to their development requirements.  Our attorneys regularly counsel developers with respect to land use entitlements, governmental permitting, and land development strategy.  We have assisted with the establishment of special taxing districts and community development districts, enabling developers to obtain bond financing on favorable terms.  We provide counsel on large scale developments, as well as single site and in-fill properties.  Our experience with respect to entitlements, planning, implementation, financing, sale and ultimate turnover in large scale developments allows a practical perspective when dealing with development projects.  We have negotiated several development agreements with governmental bodies to accomplish vesting of development entitlements and to allocate responsibility for development of supporting infrastructure.

Real Estate Financing

Our attorneys represent lenders and borrowers in all types of asset-based and commercial loans.  The loans include construction and permanent financing for residential projects, office buildings, warehouses, hotels, marinas, shopping centers, condominiums, time-share condominiums, industrial facilities, revolving credit agreements, equity participation loans, and various other loans.

Construction and Architectural Contracts

We handle the negotiation and preparation of contracts on behalf of and with public and private owners, with architects, contractors, construction managers, and subcontractors.  We have extensive experience in providing counsel with respect to construction contracts.

Real Estate Litigation

The Firm represents developers, lenders, investors, brokers, title insurers, and others in connection with foreclosures, title insurance issues, homeowner’s disputes, construction litigation, partners’ disputes, club membership litigation, contract litigation, commission disputes, civil and criminal forfeitures, and executive compensation and termination disputes.  The Firm has considerable experience in the defense of lender liability suits in state and federal courts.

Loan Work-Outs

Our attorneys have assisted lenders and borrowers concerning real estate work-outs.  We advise lenders on strategies to minimize the risk of a borrower bankruptcy.  We handle loan restructuring and deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure.

Partnerships; Limited Liability Companies; Corporations

We handle the structuring and formation of general and limited partnerships, limited liability companies, corporations, and joint ventures.  We regularly provide counsel concerning rights and obligations of partners and members.  We are able to advise the client as to the proper vehicle to be used in connection with their real estate or corporate activities.  The partnership and limited liability companies include agreements between managing partners (or members) and equity partners (or members) and address issues of management and allocation of relative rights and responsibilities among the partners or members.

Condominiums; Homeowners' Associations; Clubs

Our attorneys have experience in representation of homeowners’ associations, condominium associations, and both equity and non-equity membership clubs.  We work with developers to draft condominium documents, homeowners’ association documents, and club documents.  We have handled the turn-over of associations and counseled developers to minimize liability to the homeowners.  We have represented developers in connection with litigation arising from various association documents and turn-over issues.