Kelley M. Lincoln

Practices

Litigation

Trust and Estate Litigation

Education

University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, J.D., 2002, Certificate in Governmental Affairs, 2002

California State University, Chico, B.A., International Relations and Latin American Studies, 1999

Bar Admissions

California

United States District Court, Eastern District of California

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Kelley M. Lincoln

Kelley M. Lincoln

Shareholder

Kelley has extensive State and Federal trial experience, often serving as lead trial counsel. She is experienced in business, real estate and trust and estate litigation. For many years, Kelley assisted title insurance companies in resolving a plethora of covered claims. She litigated cases involving easements, secured real property liens, foreclosures, real estate fraud, insurance bad faith, escrow liability and agency. Kelley knows her way around a courtroom, which has made her a sought-after litigator for cases that go well beyond the niche of title and escrow law.

I am never afraid to take a case to trial. That said, my goal is always to try to resolve litigation disputes before trial becomes inevitable.

“As a trial lawyer, I have taken a wide variety of cases to trial. Whether it’s a feud between business partners or a dispute over real estate, I excel at presenting my client’s story to a judge or jury in a compelling, persuasive way.”

I am an early riser. I love what I can accomplish before the sun rises, whether it is at the gym, at home meditating – or getting a head start at the office.

Experience

Civil, Commercial and Business Litigation

  • Represented a real estate broker against a $700,000 claim for breach of contract and fraud related to the sale of a medical office building in Southern California. Obtained a complete defense verdict for her client after a week-long jury trial in Los Angeles County Superior Court.
  • Successfully defended the owner of a car dealership in a jury trial involving a $200,000 breach of contract claim in San Joaquin County Superior Court. Trial court verdict was affirmed on appeal.

Title Insurance and Escrow Litigation

  • Represented a title company that was sued for over $1 million in a multi-party action venued in San Mateo County Superior Court’s complex litigation division. Obtained a judgment of non-suit at the close of Plaintiff’s case.
  • Represented a title insurance company that was sued in Federal Court by a bank on a claim exceeding $1 million arising from an alleged bad faith breach of the insurance contract. Along with shareholder Michael Kuzmich, defeated the claim through a motion for summary judgment that upheld the title insurance company’s right to rely on a No Voluntary Payment clause in the policy as a basis to deny title insurance coverage to the bank.
  • Represented  title insurance companies seeking to establish priority lien positions on behalf of their insured institutional lenders as against lenders holding trust deeds secured by home equity lines of credit and other obligations. Have settled many of these cases, often resulting in a full release and reconveyance of the adverse trust deed.

Real Estate Litigation

  • Represented a tenant farmer against breach of lease claims by a corporate landlord in a multi-week arbitration before a three-member panel of arbitrators. Successfully defended the breach of contract claims, upheld the agricultural lease and obtained various equitable rights for the tenant in fields adjacent to the leased premises.
  • Represented a national trust company in an action to secure possession of commercial real property against a previous owner that did not vacate the property after foreclosure. Obtained a judgment against the entity in possession after trial in Sacramento County Superior Court.
  • Represented an individual in an easement dispute involving multiple adjacent land owners in Sacramento County. Succeeded in affirming the individual’s rights in the easement after a two-week bench trial in Sacramento County Superior Court.

Involvement

Professional Associations and Memberships

Treasurer of Operation Protect and Defend, a program of the Anthony M. Kennedy Learning and Library Center Foundation

Immediate Past Executive Chair of Operation Protect and Defend

President, Sacramento Network of Chico State Alumni

Member at Large, Chico State Alumni Association Board of Directors

Executive Committee Member, Chico State Alumni Association

Graduate of Leadership Sacramento, a program of the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, Class of 2008

Honors

Sacramento Magazine Top Lawyer, 2019

Sacramento Business Journal Best of the Bar, 2013 and 2018