James S. Gibson’s practice focuses on real estate transactions, with an emphasis on purchase and sale transactions; options; commercial leasing; real estate secured loans; easements and licenses; and the planning and development of commercial and residential properties. Mr. Gibson advises property owners, developers, builders, investors, landlords, tenants, lenders and owners’ associations in real estate issues including the preparation and negotiation of purchase/sale, lease and option contracts, easements, loan documents, development agreements, CCRs and condominium documents, title insurance, and contractor, broker and management agreements.
Prior to forming Gibson Knecht PC, Mr. Gibson was a shareholder at Zwillinger Greek Knecht & Gibson PC from 2014 to 2018. Mr. Gibson was a principal at the Phoenix office of Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP from 2010 to 2014, and a partner at the boutique real estate law firm of Lisker, Page & Gibson PLLC from 2005 to 2010. Mr. Gibson began his legal career as an associate attorney at the Phoenix office of Bryan Cave LLP from 1999 to 2005.
A native Arizonan, Mr. Gibson earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Regional Development, magna cum laude, from the University of Arizona. Mr. Gibson received his law degree from Gonzaga University School of Law in Spokane, Washington, where he graduated magna cum laude. He is an active member of the State Bar of Arizona and the State Bar of New Mexico.
Mr. Gibson has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 2013, and has been named a Southwest Super Lawyer since 2017. In 2012, he was honored as one of Arizona’s Finest Lawyers for his demonstrated record of high achievement, legal skills and well-earned reputation for integrity.
- Real Estate Transaction from A to Z (May 2018)
- Handling Real Estate Transactions From Start to Finish (June 2016)
- Title Workshop: From Examination to Commitment (Title and Survey Review) (June 2015)
- Title Law: A to Z (Reading Surveys, Descriptions and Plats) (June 2014)
- In-Depth Title Insurance Principles (Understanding Title Insurance; Endorsements and Exceptions) (December 2012)
- Title Workshop: From Examination to Commitment (What to Look for In Surveys, Descriptions and Plats) (February 2012)
- Advanced Title Insurance Issues (Owner and Lender Concerns; Commercial Endorsements) (June 2011)
Gonzaga University, J.D., magna cum laude, 1999
The University of Arizona, B.S., magna cum laude, 1996
State Bar of Arizona, 1999
State Bar of New Mexico, 2007
- Engaged as counsel to national, regional and local homebuilders in single and multi-phased acquisitions, rolling options and the development of residential subdivisions throughout the Southwestern United States.
- Represented lead homebuilder in the joint acquisition, development and sale of a 1500-acre master planned community in Arizona involving a consortium of builders.
- Represented homebuilders in auction sales from the Arizona State Land Department and subsequent development and sales transactions.
- Advised homebuilders in the preparation of CCRs, consumer purchaser contracts, disclosures and sales materials.
- Engaged as counsel to developers and investor groups in the acquisition, sale, development and operation of new and existing apartment complexes and residential condominium projects.
- Assisted developers with construction contracts, condominium documents and sales materials.
Joint Venture Transactions
- Represented homebuilders and developers in the structure and drafting of joint venture transactions.
- Represented an owner/builder in a joint venture transaction involving the conveyance of assets into multiple joint venture entities, and the sale of membership interests in those entities in exchange for an infusion of new capital to satisfy US$125 million of existing debt.
Mixed Use Office and Retail Projects
- Represented developers in mixed use retail, office and shopping center projects.
- Represented an office developer/seller in the development and subsequent sale of units within office condominium projects in Arizona.
- Advised Fortune 100 company in the vetting, due diligence and acquisition structure for a portfolio of solar projects throughout central Arizona.
- Represented global solar company in the acquisition of property and securing option rights and easement rights for solar projects.
- Engaged as counsel to landlords and tenants in commercial lease transactions including lease and sub-lease transactions for restaurants, office space, retail space and special-use facilities.
- Represented manufacturing company in state ground lease and sublease transactions for a special-use manufacturing facility in New Mexico.
Golf Course Properties
- Represented golf course owners and operators in the purchase and sale of golf course properties including a portfolio of golf courses and related inventories and business assets.
- Engaged as counsel to a national landbanker in the acquisition, option-back and construction financing of residential subdivisions throughout Arizona, California, Florida and Virginia.
- Engaged as counsel to borrowers and lenders in the negotiation and documentation of real estate secured loan transactions.
- Represented a retail developer in securing a US$160 million construction loan for the development of a regional shopping mall in Arizona.