Condemnation

News & Analysis as of

Municipal Condemnation of Privately Held Utilities Continues to be a Hot Issue, but at what Cost?

In January, I spoke at a conference in Austin about efforts by municipalities to condemn privately-held utility companies. At the time, I figured it would be a one-off presentation on a pretty niche issue, even for eminent...more

California Supreme Court Salvages Precondemnation Entry Statute by Reforming to Include Right to Jury

It is not often that the California Supreme Court steps in to reform legislation that would otherwise be unconstitutional, but that’s what it did in Property Reserve, Inc. v. Superior Court (S.Ct. No. S217738), issued July...more

Greater Flexibility in Challenging Pipeline Takings

The standards contained in the Uniform Condemnation Procedures Act allow greater flexibility to trial judges when evaluating the necessity of a pipeline taking than other takings. Since initially writing this post, as a...more

Loophole Allowing Adverse Possession Claims Against Municiplalities Closed

New legislation has been enacted overruling the Waisanen v. Superior Township case that allowed adverse possession claims against municipal property owners. In this blog post, I described the decision in Waisanen v....more

California Supreme Court Addresses Intersection of City Right-of-Way Dedication Requirements and Project Influence in Valuing...

Just compensation in condemnation has long been held to require payment that is fair to both the property owner having its property seized and the public taking it. Two of the rules that have developed in this pursuit of...more

In A Condemnation Case, The Judge – Not Jury – Decides If A Dedication Requirement Meets Constitutional Muster

In its second major eminent domain opinion in as many months, the California Supreme Court in City of Perris v. Richard C. Stamper (S.Ct. No. S213468), issued on August 15, 2016, deals with two issues: First, is it the role...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law: April 28, June 23, June 30 and July 22, 2016

The Virginia Supreme Court issued a number of opinions this Spring and Summer in recent terms. Its work resulted in several opinions affecting Virginia local (and state) government law, in the areas of Virginia...more

Do the Provisions of the Judicial Code Automatically Apply in Eminent Domain Cases? The Commonwealth Court Recently Said No.

On June 22, 2016, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court decided the case of Township of Millcreek v. Angela Cres Trust of June 25, 1998, 1725 C.D. 2015, which decided whether 42 Pa.C.S. § 5505 applies to eminent domain cases. ...more

Landowner’s Guide to Condemnation in South Carolina - The Government Wants Your Land…What Are Your Rights?

Government projects to build or expand roadways, erect public buildings, and install infrastructure, such as sewer, water and electrical lines, all require land. So long as building projects meet certain requirements,...more

It Is Not Just About the Money

Early intervention by property owner counsel can sometimes result in convincing condemning authorities to alter either their project or the rights sought to prevent catastrophic consequences to the owner and massive just...more

New Municipal Condemnations

For the last several years, municipalities have been slow to engage in new projects that require the use of eminent domain due to budgetary restrictions. However, with the upturn in the economy that is resulting in new...more

California’s Precondemnation Right of Entry Statutes Upheld — With a Slight Judicial Tweak

For the last two-plus years, we have been waiting for guidance from the California Supreme Court on whether public agencies could utilize the statutory “right of entry” procedure to gain access to private property to conduct...more

Wolverine Pipe Line Company filing Condemnations in Washtenaw County for Detroit Multi Access Project

Wolverine appears to be staging the filing of lawsuits to secure rights from larger, commercial properties in Washtenaw County before implementing processes against residential properties in Wayne and Washtenaw...more

Eminent Domain in California – What You Should Know and What You Can Do BEFORE the Government Comes to Take Your Property

Public development and infrastructure projects are on the rise in California. This is a good thing for the economy. InfrastructureBut it also means that private property will often be needed to complete these projects. Public...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

Oakland County Road Commission Filing Suits for Maple/Orchard Lake Roundabout

Recently, the Oakland County Road Commission has been filing suits involving properties on Orchard Lake Road. The Oakland County Road Commission has a long-term plan to install multiple roundabouts in the area of Orchard...more

So the Government Wants Your Property: Answers to 10 of the Most Common Landowner Questions

If the government is seeking to take your property, it’s important to ensure you receive fair treatment and compensation. Read on for an outline of what to expect and tips to protect yourself during the condemnation process....more

Iowa landowners file lawsuits to suspend eminent domain hearings

On Friday, May 20, Bill Hanigan of the Davis Brown Law firm filed separate lawsuits on behalf of Verdell and Marian Johnson, and Marvin and Bonnie Zoch, against Dakota Access Pipeline Company. Both couples are Cherokee County...more

Oakley to Condemn Century-Old Building for Street Widening Project

As cities become more dense and urbanized, it is common for infrastructure to get outdated or insufficient to handle increased demand. We see this with roads, highways, schools, and even utilities. When new infrastructure...more

When Can You Recover Attorneys' Fees in Eminent Domain Litigation?

Beyond the ultimate award of just compensation, the opportunity for/risk of landowner fee recovery in condemnation actions is an important issue to evaluate early on. Attorney fees can, and oftentimes do, exceed awards of...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

Taxpayer Entitled to Section 1033 Gain Exclusion Despite Holding Only a Beneficial Ownership Interest in Condemned Property

In PLR 201609003, the IRS determined that a taxpayer was entitled to exclude gain attributable to the forced transfer of the taxpayer’s ownership of public use facilities, even though the taxpayer did not hold legal title to...more

Impairment of Views From (or to) Private Property Does Not Constitute a Taking Requiring the Payment of Just Compensation

On April 26, 2016, in Boxer v. City of Beverly Hills (Case No.B258459), the Second District Court of Appeal roundly rejecting a takings lawsuit premised on alleged impairment of private views and speculative risk of fire...more

Eminent Domain for California’s Social Infrastructure

While much of the focus in California lately has been on eminent domain for transportation projects, there’s some new condemnations moving forward in both Northern California and Southern California for social — or community...more

Texas Supreme Court: Improper Application of Project-Influence Rule Resulted in Harmful Error

The Texas Constitution provides that “[n]o person’s property shall be taken, damaged or destroyed for or applied to public use without adequate compensation being made.” Tex. Const. art. I, § 17. The Texas Supreme Court has...more

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