Main Bio

Practice Overview

Lee P. Bardellini is an experienced litigator with a view to practical resolution. A real estate litigation attorney with deep experience, Lee represents title insurers, escrow companies, brokers and lenders in complex real estate litigation. He also advises and prepares coverage determinations for insurers and insureds. His clients include underwritten title companies and insureds of various title companies with respect to title claims and disputes, escrow claims, insurance coverage, and a broad range of real property-related matters.

Lee is a leading authority on the McEnerney Act, which addresses the title problems arising from the loss of records in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire. He was lead and appellate counsel in Branscom v. JP Morgan Chase, which expanded and clarified equitable subordination in California.


Lee was a partner in the former Bardellini, Straw, Cavin & Bupp LLP, a boutique law firm that specialized in real estate and business litigation, real estate transactions, title insurance and escrows. Lee has served as house-counsel for Western Title Insurance Company, handling claims and litigation matters for the company and its insureds. He also has served as vice-president/in-house counsel and part owner of Del Norte County Title Company, an underwritten title company.

As a former member of the California Land Title Association’s Forms and Practices Committee and Legislative Committee, Lee participated in the revision of the forms of title products and considered the effect of title policy and guarantee provisions with respect to various transactions. Lee also participated in the review and revision of the standard form policy of title insurance.

Practice Areas


  • J.D., Hastings College of Law, University of California
  • B.A. Political Science, with Honors, University of California at Berkeley

Speaking & Publications

Speaking Engagements

Lee has presented seminars and training for the California Land Title Association, the National Business Institute (NBI), and Lohrman, covering topics including claims handling, claims analysis, policy interpretation, escrow, and application of the Fair Claims Practices Act. Lee spoke on October 17, 2014, at the Contra Costa County Bar Association’s Real Estate Section on the topic of Branscomb v. JP Morgan Chase: Equitable subrogation and impacts on deeds of trust.

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