Real Estate Litigation

We offer services to homeowners and businesses in Manassas, Front Royal, Winchester, and the Valley in all aspects of real estate and real estate litigation, including:

  • Review and drafting of commercial leases
  • Structuring of land trusts, LLCs, partnerships for land development and ownership
  • Adverse possession defense work—offensive adverse possession is a case we would look at carefully before taking on due to equity issues
  • Litigating over easements and exceptions improperly noted or overlooked in title work or Closing Protection Letters
  • Fraudulent home sales—with a particular emphasis on failure to disclose serious mold and other latent defects
  • Complex and simple deed drafting
  • Title examinations
  • Zoning approvals, appeals and related negotiation
  • Construction fraud and VCPA violations
  • Going to court on all aspects of real estate disputes, from breach of land and sales contracts to specific performance, warranty work and mechanic’s liens
  • Wise counsel on neighbor disputes (which is to say that in too many cases, no one wins and both sides pay too much in attorney’s fees)

Review Commercial Leases

Structuring of land trusts, LLCs, and partnerships for land development and ownership; Adverse possession

Complex and simple deed drafting;

Title examinations;

Zoning approvals, appeals, and related negotiation;

Construction fraud and VCPA violations;

Reach Out to Jarvis Law Today

Our Expertise in Real Estate Litigation

Elaine Jarvis has garnered extensive knowledge of real estate and mortgage markets, with Virginia Certified Title Settlement Agent (VCTSA), Virginia Title Insurance Pre-Licensing Course and Virginia Certification Title Examiner (VCTE) certifications earned in 2018. She has litigated boundary disputes, adverse possession, easements and exceptions, nuisance claims as well as landlord/tenant cases in Virginia State courts from Northern Virginia (Arlington, Fairfax and Manassas) to the Shenandoah Valley. She has almost five years’ experience at AMLAW top 100 law firms in D.C., with experience gained in business litigation and commercial contract review and drafting. She is comfortable in front of judges and juries, with jury and bench trial experience in Virginia state courts, 1997-2003, 2018-present.

Jarvis Law steps in where several areas of law can intersect. In real estate law, you need a lawyer with a toolbox culled from subjects like property, contracts, banking law, financing, land use, zoning, tax, trusts and estate planning. Throw into that toolbox the procedures that govern cases brought in Virginia state court, and you might find it hard to locate a lawyer in Winchester, Front Royal or to the south in the Shenandoah Valley that is willing to take on a difficult real estate case or deal. Please contact Jarvis Law if you want local counsel that wants to take on the difficult real estate cases.

You Deserve The Best Real Estate Litigation Lawyers

over 30 years of law experience

Real Estate Litigation in Virginia

Most of our real estate litigation occurs where we live: the Shenandoah Valley. We have successfully taken on real estate disputes in the 26th Judicial District of Virginia, which includes the Cities of Harrisonburg and Winchester, as well as the Counties of Frederick, Warren, Clarke, Page, Shenandoah and Rockingham. We defend and assist landowners and businesses in Northern Virginia, from Fairfax to Warrenton, Prince William to Leesburg, in all matters that affect their land.

Amanda Chaillan

Senior Adviser, Business

Amanda Chaillan earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science with a minor in English from Chapman University in 2008. Her collegiate study focused on intercultural and global relations, including a research semester at Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic and a semester of study at Georgetown University, Washington, DC. She also completed an Executive Certificate in Strategic Management from the Harvard Extension School in 2017.

Amanda’s career has always been at the intersection of nonprofits, business and government. Focused on delivering positive impact, she has helped build organizations, develop business strategies and craft messaging that advances the work of visionaries and leaders that are shaping the world. She played a critical role in marketing and practice integration for the energy sector group of a global law firm, led engagement with legal counsel and the Board of Directors to establish and facilitate strategic planning for the launch of a water-focused nonprofit, and has led program teams addressing a range of corporate social responsibilities (CSR) issues.  

Amanda brings her business acumen and operational expertise to every engagement, drawing on her particular strengths in stakeholder engagement, program development and storytelling. She is committed to continuing to build a career of service and working to make a positive impact on the world.

Tarra Smeltzer

Office Manager

Tarra Smeltzer has constructed a career that builds on her passion for personal wellness and strong business ethics. She brings a big heart and incredible attention to detail to every role she takes on. Whether it’s supporting customers or working with colleagues, she is a doer and fixer, helping manage cases, fostering a collaborative culture and trouble-shooting operational and legal issues.

With more than 30 years of customer service experience, Tarra manages the trial and team schedules and coordinates office operations to deliver the best outcomes for Jarvis clients. She also brings research skills and issue experience in the areas of real estate, consumer and family law.

Tarra is a vital member of the Jarvis team, and a caring champion of clients. In her free time she enjoys hiking in the Shenandoah Valley, reading and spending time with her loving family.

Madeline Farris


A student at the College of William & Mary, Madeline Farris is a Classics Major who plans to follow in the footsteps of Mrs. Jarvis as a lawyer and an author. Ever since the age of 12, Madeline has been writing: with six complete novels, Madeline is determined to publish her work, but she loves her work at Jarvis Law, where she is able to crack fascinating cases and help good people. Madeline figures in a leadership position in her campus’s Unitarian Universalist ministry, and also works at the Williamsburg Unitarian Universalist Church as the Childcare Coordinator.

Madeline has experience in the nonprofit and legal aid sectors: she worked with Mrs. Jarvis as Mrs. Jarvis’s intern while Mrs. Jarvis was still a staff attorney at Blue Ridge Legal Services, and also worked with Valley Assistance Network from 2019-2020 as an intern, where she was able to help connect struggling people with necessary resources.

Madeline is also the stepdaughter of a Certified Flight Instructor (CFI), so she is studying to obtain her light sport pilots license, for as Leonardo Da Vinci once said, “Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.”

Madeline’s favorite areas of law are family, consumer protection, and business law. She enjoys finding odd solutions to difficult problems, and assisting wonderful souls in a world that is sometimes unforgiving and cruel. Madeline’s hobbies include playing the clarinet, taking long walks in nature, and talking to her vivacious pet goldfish, Bertie.

Joshua Smeltzer


Joshua Smeltzer obtained a Bachelor of Science in Philosophy from James Madison University in 2022, following his service with the U.S. Army. He is a compassionate and committed public servant building a career that draws on his strong communication, research and management skills.

Josh seeks out opportunities that require critical thinking and creative solutions to address the complex challenges faced by clients. As a lead researcher, he dives deep into an issue to inform the legal strategy of the Jarvis team. He has led research on legal issues including consumer law, real estate, family law and estate planning.

Josh is a dedicated family man and proud member of the Shenandoah Valley community. In his free time, Josh enjoys physical activities and indulging in a new book.

Elaine Jarvis

Elaine Jarvis obtained her law degree from the Marshall Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary in 1997. She practiced law in D.C. and Northern Virginia for several years, obtaining experience in litigation, antitrust, mergers & acquisitions, bankruptcy and contract law. She put the practice of law on hold for a bit to raise three children and run multiple businesses, with a focus on publishing and helping non-profits. Over the course of a decade, Elaine wrote ten novels and built a social media following of more than 50,000 people with her page and blog, Running from Hell with El. Her first two novels, Ripple: a Tale of Hope and Redemption and I Run: a Novel won awards and hit Amazon bestseller’s list at #1 and #2.

In 2015, Elaine moved from Fairfax County to the mountains of Front Royal and found her love for the practice of law rekindled. She joined Blue Ridge Legal Services, Inc. (BRLS) in Winchester, where she helped low-income clients in Frederick County, Clarke County, Front Royal, Shenandoah and Page County–and all parts in between. These clients faced legal issues in consumer law, bankruptcy, landlord/tenant, and estate planning. At BRLS, Elaine counted success as roofs kept over heads and clients saved from overwhelming threats to their survival. Leaving BRLS and her office mates was hard, but being able to help folks in Northern Virginia, Manassas, Winchester, the Valley and of course Front Royal while also focusing on complex fact patterns, small businesses, and aggrieved consumers makes for a journey into an exciting future. Elaine’s outside interests include writing, flying airplanes, hiking, adventuring, gardening and piloting things that go fast and land gently. She enjoys running and traveling from mountain to ocean and just about anywhere in between—as long as she can escape the city. She welcomes people from all faith traditions, ethnic backgrounds, genders, and personal belief systems to her practice.