Michael J. Kuzmich

Michael J. Kuzmich


Mike Kuzmich practices real estate, business, and agribusiness litigation with a sub-specialty in title insurance and escrow litigation. He has experience prosecuting, defending, and resolving all types of general and complex civil disputes in state and federal courts (trial and appellate) and in private dispute-resolution forums (mediation, arbitration, and judicial reference).

My clients are constantly assessing risks and benefits to make smart business decisions. I understand that litigation diverts time, energy, and other valuable resources away from a client’s business. My job is to candidly advise my clients about their dispute and develop and execute a business-minded plan through advocacy and negotiation. Far more often than not, a negotiated resolution that brings certainty and closure is more preferable than a knock-down, drag-out fight.

I am direct and frank with my clients and opposing counsel. I don’t blow smoke and I don’t make promises or threats that I can’t deliver.

When I’m not lawyering I enjoy traveling with my wife and our daughters, watching our daughters play soccer and lacrosse, sampling local craft breweries, practicing yoga, fishing, and hunting. During duck season I can hit our duck blind at first light and still be at my desk by 9:30.


Real Estate and Business Litigation

  • Represent real estate developers, lenders, for-profit businesses, non-profit land trusts, and individuals in a wide range of disputes arising from purchase-and-sale, development, and land-use agreements, leases, CC&Rs, boundary and survey issues, easements, conservation easements, and other claims for breach of contract, specific performance, rescission, fraud, misrepresentation, nondisclosure, breach of fiduciary and, others.
  • Represent commercial landlords and tenants in lease and contract disputes, including commercial unlawful detainer actions.
  • Experience representing national lending institutions on large construction projects against mechanic’s liens and bonded stop notice claims.

Title Insurance and Escrow Litigation

  • Represent national title insurance and escrow companies and their insureds in prosecuting and defending litigation involving a wide range of title and real estate issues, including lien priority disputes, mechanic’s liens, easements, equitable subrogation, prosecution of subrogation claims for claims paid by insurers, fraud, and others.
  • Assist industry clients with emergency situations involving time- and/or business-sensitive claims, coverage issues, escrows, and litigation.
  • Correct defective chains of title and other liens and encumbrances through practical and cost-efficient solutions prior to filing litigation.
  • Routinely dispose of cases for and against title insurance companies and insureds via dispositive motions, including demurrers and motions for summary judgment.
  • Defend title insurers against claims for bad-faith breach of title insurance policies.
  • Prosecute and defend appeals arising from our own cases and from cases handled by others at the trial court level.
  • Boutin Jones Inc. represented an escrow agent in defending a lawsuit filed by a third party to an escrow. The escrow involved the transfer of real estate pursuant to a settlement agreement that arose from a trust/probate dispute. The lawsuit included causes of action for fraud, constructive fraud, professional negligence, and aiding and abetting, and arose from allegations that (1) there was an alleged defect in a deed of trust that was recorded and assigned to the plaintiff and (2) the escrow company refused to issue a policy of title insurance to the plaintiff because of the alleged defect. The firm successfully demurred to the plaintiff’s initial and amended complaints, and on appeal, the Court of Appeal affirmed and awarded costs to the firm’s client. The Court of Appeal agreed with the firm’s arguments, including that the duties of an escrow agent are limited to the parties to the escrow and did not extend to preventing the defect alleged by plaintiff. Michael J. Kuzmich and Michael E. Chase were the Boutin Jones shareholders involved in the case.



2012 to present

Presenter at three annual Continuing Education of the Bar, Real Property Law Practice: Annual Recent Developments

Commercial Lease Disputes: Enforcement, Eviction and Alternatives, Sacramento County Bar Association Real Property Section, Co-Presenter


Northern California Super Lawyer 2019-2022

Sacramento Business Journal Best of the Bar

Sacramento Magazine Top Lawyer

Law School: Order of the Coif

Undergraduate: cum laude

Professional Associations and Memberships

Former Member, Boutin Jones Inc., Board of Directors

Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Sacramento Class of 2015