Civil Procedure Zoning, Planning & Land Use Residential Real Estate

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Court Upholds City’s Communities Facilities District and Related Special Tax

The question of who should pay the cost of municipal services for new residential development is a vexing question. The answer is critically important to the developers and homebuilders who must finance and market their...more

Supreme Court Allows Early Challenges to Wetlands Jurisdictional Determinations

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that a property owner can go to court to challenge a determination by the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) that part of the property is “waters of the U.S.” or connected wetlands and therefore...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinion Affecting Local Government Law: September 22, 2016

The Virginia Supreme Court issued one additional opinion in September affecting local government law, on September 22, 2016. This opinion addressed the priority to be given a local government special assessment lien over a...more

New Opinion Clarifies Takings Law Regarding Affordable Housing Programs

Last year, my partner Ben Rubin reported on the California Supreme Court’s decision in California Building Industry Association v. City of San Jose, which analyzed an inclusionary housing ordinance and held that such...more

Texas Supreme Court Affirms Property Owners' Rights Within the Extraterritorial Jurisdiction

On May 27, 2016, in Town of Lakewood Village v. Bizios, the Texas Supreme Court held that general law municipalities do not have the authority to enforce building codes within their extraterritorial jurisdictions (ETJs). This...more

Developers Who Elect Not to Pay Comprehensive Permit Fees in Full Proceed at Their Peril

The Massachusetts Appeals Court issued an opinion on August 29, 2016, that has significant ramifications for developers seeking Comprehensive Permits for affordable housing projects under chapter 40B of the Massachusetts...more

North Carolina Supreme Court Gives Easement Holders 20 Years to Challenge Encroachments

On August 19, 2016, the North Carolina Supreme Court issued a decision that will benefit all companies that own easements. Patrolling easements and clearing them of vegetation and structures can be very costly, but the...more

Judge, not Jury, Must Consider the Constitutionality of a Dedication Requirement and Whether it Qualifies as a "Project Effect"

One issue that can arise in eminent domain actions involving undeveloped (or under developed) property is whether the property being acquired is potentially subject to a dedication requirement. If the property’s overall...more

Appellate Court Notes

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: SC19378 - State v. Francis - SC19411 - State v. Wright - Appellate Court Advance Release Opinions: AC35949 - State v. Porter - AC36656 - State v. Gonzalez - AC36971...more

High Court Inclusive Communities Ruling: 1 Year Later

Last summer the U.S. Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project,[1] holding that disparate impact discrimination claims are...more

Cómo los desarrolladores inmobiliarios del sur de Florida están reduciendo el riesgo de litigios

En los días previos a la Gran Recesión de 2008, las propiedades en todo el sur de Florida se compraban solamente para ser revendidas posteriormente con una ganancia. Este “intercambio” de propiedades culminó en un mercado...more

Two Decisions out of San Diego Remind Us to Follow the Rules

We don’t often see multiple takings-related cases in one week, but last week we saw three. The California Supreme Court’s decision in Property Reserve was obviously the most important, but the Fourth Appellate District Court...more

Wetlands Determinations - Uncertainty for the Clean Water Rule?

On May 31, 2016, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in United States Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Co., Inc. holding that approved judicial determinations as to the presence of wetlands issued by the...more

Classic Private Property Rights and Public Coffers

In April 2014, we posted a blog discussing the North Carolina Supreme Court’s opinion in Beroth Oil v. NCDOT, 367 N.C. 33, 757 S.E. 2d 466 (2014). (See here) In that post, we compared high frequency stock market trading and...more

Defeated North Carolina Class Action Ultimately Results in Victory for Landowners – NCDOT Loses Map Act Fight

What began several years ago as a defeated attempt at a class action against the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) ultimately resulted in a win this month for plaintiff landowners in Kirby v. NCDOT (No....more

Drilling to the Essence of a Land Use Proceeding

What type of land use proceeding is this? Finding the correct answer to this question is critical to knowing your client’s rights and avoiding legal error. Like different sports, there are distinct types of land use...more

Supreme Court Rules Landowners Can Challenge Jurisdictional Determinations

On May 31, 2016, in a unanimous ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court held in USACE v. Hawkes Co. that approved jurisdictional determinations (“JD”) are final actions which can be reviewed by the courts. Under the Clean Water Act a...more

Clean Water Act Client Alert: US Supreme Court Concludes US Army Corps of Engineers Wetland "Jurisdictional Determinations"...

Earlier this week, the US Supreme Court unanimously concluded that wetland determinations by the US Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) under the Clean Water Act constitute final agency action, meaning that landowners can...more

U.S. Supreme Court Puts the Brakes on Corps’ Wetlands Determinations

On May 31, 2016, in a (surprising) 8–0 decision, Chief Justice John Roberts, writing for the full Supreme Court, issued a ruling that will have far-reaching effects on landowners, real estate developers, farmers, oil and gas...more

Searching for the Heart of the Doctrine of Vested Rights Part II

On July 7, 2015, we posted “Searching for the Heart of the Doctrine of Vested Rights.”(See here) In that post, we compared a Court of Appeals’ decision in a public school teachers’ vested rights case with a decision of the...more

Update: California Supreme Court Oral Arguments

Today, the California Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the Property Reserve v. Superior Court case. Today was also the day the Court began showing live webcasts of oral arguments online, so I was able to not only hear...more

City of Perris v. Stamper Oral Arguments Are Next Week

If you are an eminent domain junkie like us, then you will appreciate knowing that the City of Perris v. Stamper case (S213468) will be heard by the California Supreme Court on May 5, 2016, at 9:00 a.m. in San Francisco. As a...more

Landmark Discrimination Case: Fair Housing Act Thwarts NIMBYs - Avenue 6E Investments, LLC v. City of Yuma (March 25, 2016)

Why It Matters: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision in favor of the City of Yuma, Arizona, and concluded instead that there was sufficient evidence to present to a jury that the City had rejected the...more

Homeowners Cannot Recover for Blocked Views of Hollywood Sign

One of the most valuable assets many homeowners enjoy is their property’s view. If the government undertakes an activity that eliminates or obstructs that view, is an owner entitled to relief? In Boxer v. City of Beverly...more

According to the Right and Good of Ancient Law

“You don’t know what you don’t know” is a popular catchphrase. So, do you know what a “betterment” is and how the law of betterments operates? Land use law has ancient roots. Sometimes, a case requires an appellate...more

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