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William P. McCaughan

Fax +1.305.358.7095

William McCaughan is a partner in the Miami office and is a member of the real estate practice group. With over 35 years of experience, he has handled virtually every aspect of real estate transactions, including acquisitions, leasing, and secured financing. Representative matters include the representation of a joint venture in the acquisition of land and the development of a multi-million dollar office building in downtown Miami. Mr. McCaughan represented a national home builder in the acquisition of farmland for residential development. This matter required the resolution of numerous title defects before the transaction could close, and Mr. McCaughan was able to successfully resolve these title defects. Mr. McCaughan has represented parties in both sides of secured real estate financing, including construction and development loans. Mr. McCaughan has negotiated numerous leases on behalf of both landlords and tenants.

Mr. McCaughan also represents clients in real estate litigation disputes as well as general commercial litigation. It is his broad experience in litigating real estate issues which enhances his ability to represent clients in transactional matters. Having litigated matters involving real estate documentation, which has not been properly prepared, he is able to prepare the documentation to avoid litigation by properly addressing the issues in the documentation. Some representative matters include the successful representation of a national restaurant chain in a dispute with the landlord over the renewal rent rate where the lease did not provide for a mechanism to determine fair market rent, together with other issues involving the interpretation of the lease terms. The successful representation of a landlord in defending a claim by a real estate broker for additional real estate commissions on the renewal of a lease.

Selected representative engagements include:

Real Estate Finance
  • Representation of both sellers and purchasers of mortgages and mortgage servicing rights.
  • Represented Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in reviewing and approving their residential mortgage loan documents for the state of Florida.  These are the most commonly used documents in residential transactions by all lenders.
  • Representation of mortgage banking entities in virtually every aspect of their operations including loan servicing agreements, loan correspondent agreements, warehouse lines of credit, and RESPA issues.
  • Representation of developers and mortgage lenders facing issues with HUD/FHA from project approvals to approval as a HUD/FHA lender.
  • Acting as lender's counsel in multi-million dollar construction and commercial loan transactions.
  • Commercial litigation involving real estate and real estate lending, including but not limited to the defense of lending lender liability actions.
  • Represented a national home builder in the multi-million dollar acquisition of farmland for development.  This project also required a quiet title action to remove numerous title liens.
  • Represented a joint venture in the acquisition and development of a multi-million dollar commercial project in downtown Miami.  This project included a complicated joint venture and financing from a Japanese Bank.
  • Successfully argued before the First District Court of Appeals, State of Florida on behalf of one of the country’s largest home builders for the inclusion of a mandatory arbitration clause in a condominium purchase agreement against the opposition of the Florida Department of Land Sales and Condominiums.
  • Represented a Florida home builder in the $250 million sale of assets to a national home builder.
  • Negotiated numerous commercial leases on behalf of both tenants and landlords
  • Successfully represented an automobile manufacturer in a multimillion dollar leasing dispute with an automobile distributor, including obtaining a ruling that the tenant did not have an option to purchase the property.
  • Represented a national real estate management and leasing company in a lawsuit alleging mismanagement of a commercial shopping center.
  • Defended an office building owner in a claim by a real estate broker for commissions arising from the renewal of leases in the office building.
Distressed Real Estate
  • US Bank v. Bartram - 211 So. 3d 1009 (Fla. 2016); reh. den. SC 14-1265 2017 WL 1020467 (Fla. Mar. 16, 2017); and its sister case, Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas v. Beauvais, 188 So. 3d 938 (Florida 3d District Court of Appeal 2016) (en banc decision reversing the prior panel decision of the court). These cases hold that Florida statute of limitations does not bar subsequent foreclosure action when previous action dismissed more than five years earlier. These opinions uphold the validity of thousands of mortgages and millions of dollars of loans, which otherwise would have been unenforceable as a result of the claimed expiration of the statute of limitations.
  • Represented lender in foreclosure of $56 million development loan on proposed 1,100 residential development project in which the infrastructure was completed but no vertical construction had commenced.  This matter also dealt with issues raised by defaults under existing an Community Development District ("CDD") which was created to fund the infrastructure.
  • Represented lender in foreclosure of $34 million acquisition and development loan on a commercial shopping center which was only partially constructed.  This matter involved the obtaining of a receiver for the project as well as dealing with numerous construction liens and construction issues.
  • Work-out of $20 million acquisition loan for the development of a hotel and condominium development.
  • Represented lender in foreclosure of $9 million acquisition loan for mixed use development of residential and retail units.  This litigation also involved the successful mediation and collection of a multi-million dollar deficiency judgment on behalf of the lender.
  • Foreclosure of a $20 million acquisition and development loan for a residential project.

Professional Background

Prior to joining K&L Gates, Mr. McCaughan was a partner at one of the largest law firms in the United States. He also served as Vice President and General Counsel of McCaughan Mortgage Company (1981-2004).

Professional/Civic Activities

  • The Florida Bar
    • Real Property;
    • Probate and Trust Law Section;
    • Executive Council;
    • Mortgage Law Committee, Chairman, 1994-2004;
    • Grievance Committee, Chairman, 1997-2000
    • Grievance Committee, 2014-present
    • Fellow, American College of Mortgage Attorneys
    • State Chair, State of Florida for the American College of Mortgage Attorneys
  • Illinois State Bar Association

Speaking Engagements

  • “Negotiating Strategies In Structuring Real Estate Workout Agreements”
  • “Mortgage Foreclosures-Techniques, Strategies and Defenses”
  • “Recent Issues In Mortgage Litigation”
  • “Mortgage Fraud: Let The Closing Agent Beware”

Additional Information

Published Opinions
  • US Bank v. Bartram - 211 So. 3d 1009 (Fla. 2016); reh. den. SC 14-1265 2017 WL 1020467 (Fla. Mar. 16, 2017);
  • Deutsche Bank v. Beauvais, 188 So. 3d 938 (Fla. 3d DCA 2016);
  • Deutsche Bank v. Altos Del Mar, 187 So. 3d 931 (Fla. 3d DCA 2016);
  • Sinaltrainal v. Coca-Cola Company, et al., 578 F.3d 1252 (2009);
  • Lennar Homes, Inc. v. Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Division of Florida Land Sales, Condominiums and Mobile Homes, 888 So. 2d 50 (Fla. App. 1 Dist. Sep. 27, 2004);
  • McCaughan Mortg. Co., Inc. v. American Nat. Bank, 634 So. 2d 1099 (Fla. App. 3 Dist. Mar. 10, 1992);
  • Blue Gray Corporations I & II, et al. v. Merrill Lynch, et al., 921 F.2d 267 (1991);
  • Commercial Laundries, Inc. v. Golf Course Towers Associates, et al., 568 So. 2d 501 (1990);
  • Cynthia Yelen v. Bankers Trust Company, 476 So.2d 767 (1985);
  • In re Bateman, 331 F.3d 821 (11th Cir.)