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James Dennis Menke

James Dennis MenkePartner
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Practice Areas

  • Civil Litigation
  • Real Estate
  • Zoning, Planning and Land Use
  • Real Estate Development

Admitted: 1997, California

Law School: University of San Diego, J.D.

Member: Orange County Bar Association (Member, Sections on: Business Litigation, Real Estate, Small Firm), State Bar of California

Biography: James Menke’s practice focuses on all areas of civil litigation with an emphasis on the representation of business and real property clients. Mr. Menke began practicing in 1997 as an associate attorney in a reputable Costa Mesa law firm. As an associate, Mr. Menke honed his litigation skills while representing a variety of clients, including business owners, real estate brokers, shopping center owners, general and limited partners, officers of corporations, doctors and even other attorneys. Mr. Menke has participated in court trials and jury trials and appeals.

Before the formation of Menke & Menke, LLP, Mr. Menke worked for a local homebuilder. His duties included dispute resolution, litigation, managing outside counsel, obtaining city general-plan and zone changes, processing tentative and final maps, preparing option and purchase agreements, acquiring easements and other property rights, coordinating with the Department of Real Estate regarding the issuance of public reports, forming entities, drafting loan documents, reviewing and securing insurance policies, negotiating with lenders and sureties, and communicating with investors.

Representative Experience

  • Multi-million-dollar jury verdict for distributor client on cross-complaint for fraud, conversion, interference with prospective economic advantage, breach of contract and breach of covenant of good faith and fair dealing against a multinational corporation and its president
  • Jury verdict in favor of real estate developer client sued by an investor. Pursuant to a contractual provision, attorney’s fees were recovered.
  • Reversal on appeal of municipal court’s order denying motion to set aside default judgment and to transfer the action to superior court
  • Favorable settlement for apartment-owner client in personal injury case by successfully cross-complaining for indemnity by a third party even after that party had been dismissed as a defendant on a statute-of-limitations defense
  • Tested the limits of the broker-arranged loan exemption (i.e., California Constitution Article XV §1(2) and California Civil Code §1916.1) to California’s usury laws in Park Terrace Limited v. Teasdale (2002) 100 Cal.App.4th 802. This case has been cited in Miller & Starr, The Rutter Group, and Cal Jur 3d.
  • Recovered six-figure settlement for commercial real estate broker for commission earned even though the broker did not have a written compensation agreement with the defendants
  • Closed more than $100 million in acquisition and construction loans from institutional lenders, private equity “hard money” lenders and private investor syndicates.