I am super excited to do the AB 5 webinar on Friday for California appraisers. The reception has been incredible and more than 350 California appraisers have registered. This will probably be the largest meeting (albeit a virtual meeting) of California appraisers this year. The many questions I’ve received about AB 5 and related legal issues from individual appraisers around the state (from Mendocino to Mammoth to Chula Vista) have prompted me to complete a project that I have contemplated for a while. It is a special legal plan I call “Appraiser Law” that brings first-class legal counsel (that’s me) to California (and Washington) real estate appraisers at an affordable cost. Please check out www.appraiserlaw.com if you are a California or Washington appraiser.

Here’s a description of what Appraiser Law is – you can get the full details on the special site I’ve created for it: www.appraiserlaw.com.

What’s Appraiser Law? The concept of Appraiser Law is to make first-class legal counsel (once more, yes, that’s me) available to individual real estate appraisers at an affordable cost. I have spoken to thousands of appraisers in my legal career and believe that appraisers – whether they are sole-proprietors, owners of small firms or employees in large firms – need affordable access to a lawyer who truly knows something about their work. The problem is that lawyers are often too expensive – and most don’t know anything about the special legal issues affecting appraisers. That’s the problem I am solving with the legal plan called Appraiser Law. It’s available to appraisers in California now. Washington is next. More states to follow.

Appraiser Law puts the Christensen Law Firm on retainer for you. Appraiser Law enables individual appraisers to retain the Christensen Law Firm for up to 7 hours of my time each year at a greatly reduced fee for matters relating to appraisal work and business issues or disciplinary matters. With Appraiser Law, an appraiser can say “Peter Christensen is my lawyer.”

My regular hourly rate is $400, but Appraiser Law clients receive access to an annual block of my time at $50 per hour. I love working for individual appraisers and small firm owners – that’s a big part of why I’m doing this. It’s also my personal belief as a lawyer that the legal profession needs to provide better access to justice for everyday people and small business owners. I know appraisers, so that’s where I’ll do my part.

For most legal issues that appraisers need help with, a few hours of my time is sufficient because I have a giant collection of documents and materials available to me relating to appraiser legal matters, and I draw from over 20 years of legal work. This is not just some kind of “hotline.” I will draft documents and write letters on your behalf, even represent you before the Bureau of Real Estate Appraisers. In any case, under my engagement agreements for all clients (whether individual appraisers or mega national appraisal firms and AMCs), I don’t charge for quick phone calls with clients. So, just like my corporate clients, please call when you need my advice or run into a rough patch – if you’re a client.

What’s the cost? The first year annual fee for Appraiser Law is $110. An optional $10 discount applies if you maintain E&O insurance. 

What do you get? Appraiser Law clients receive up to 7 hours of total time at $50 per hour (up to 3 hours for appraisal/business legal matters and, separately, up to 4 hours for appraiser disciplinary matters). After exhausting these discounted rates, clients can continue to receive my assistance at 35% off my regular hourly rate. New appraiser clients also receive a free copy of my book Risk Management for Real Estate Appraisers and Appraisal Firms, published by the Appraisal Institute in 2019, and discounted access to my 4-hour online CE class “Appraiser Liability 101” for $40 on www.valuationeducation.com.

Thank you, Peter Christensen

Categories: Appraiser Law

Peter Christensen

I am an attorney and principal of the Christensen Law Firm. The matters that I handle are focused on real estate valuation, valuation firms, appraisers and appraisal management.