News & Analysis as of

The Use of a Legal Issues Motion in Eminent Domain Proceedings

Eminent domain actions are unique in that "the court, rather than the jury, typically decides questions concerning the preconditions to recovery of a particular type of compensation, even if the determination turns on...more

A Cautionary Tale on Alleging Precondemnation Damages Versus a De Facto Taking

Eminent domain cases typically revolve around a "date of value" – the date on which property is valued in determining the amount of just compensation the condemning agency must pay. That date is set by statute; typically, it...more

Planned Use of Eminent Domain Powers to Condemn Underwater Mortgages Faces Uncertain Constitutional Outcome

Amidst reports of rising home prices throughout California and fears of a new housing bubble, controversial plans floated by California cities to deal with the lingering effects of the mortgage meltdown by invoking their...more

Banks are Entitled to Recover Compensation in Condemnation Actions

Eminent domain or condemnation is the process by which the government is permitted to acquire a citizen’s private property for public use, after paying just compensation. Typically, property is acquired by the government...more

What Happened to Williamson County?

In 1985, the U.S. Supreme Court issued Williamson County Regional Planning Commission v. Hamilton Bank of Johnson City, 473 U.S. 172, a landmark decision (as Supreme Court decisions often are) that drastically slashed the...more

Stanislaus County Moving Forward with Claribel Road Project

After two years of negotiating with residential property owners, the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors approved acquisition of the property by eminent domain. The Modesto Bee reports that the board approved the...more

Regulatory Takings: Monks v. Rancho Palos Verdes Revisited (Again)

For those of you who have followed Nossaman's blog since the very early days, you'll recall our coverage of a significant regulatory takings case, Monks v. City of Rancho Palos Verdes. The 2008 California decision received...more

Left Out in the Cold: New Jersey Court Holds Condemning Authority Not Required to Negotiate with Lenders in Eminent Domain...

Early last month, in Borough of Merchantville v. Malik & Son, LLC, 429 N.J. Super. 416 (App. Div. 2013), the New Jersey appellate court held that a condemning authority, under the State’s eminent domain law, was not required...more

Valuation Disputes Centering on Severance Damages and Highest & Best Use

Below are some updates on California projects have turned to eminent domain to complete right-of-way acquisition. They involve issues that are somewhat typical in condemnation proceedings: disputes over severance damages and...more

Ninth Circuit Upholds Denial of Compensation for Access Impairment

Earlier this week, in an unpublished decision (pdf), the Ninth Circuit affirmed the denial of compensation for construction that altered a point of access to an existing business. (Wardany v. City of San Jacinto (9th Cir....more

Interesting Valuation Dispute in Caltrans Eminent Domain Battle

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the owner of Silveira Ranch are involved in an interesting valuation dispute stemming from Caltrans' acquisition of part of the ranchland needed for Highway 101...more

California High-Speed Rail - What You Need To Know

Project Overview - The California High-Speed Rail Authority (“HSR”) plans to build an 800-mile high-speed rail system stretching from San Francisco to Los Angeles/Anaheim and eventually to Sacramento and San Diego. The...more

Big Year For Published Eminent Domain Decisions

Originally Published in Daily Journal, January 15, 2013. As we look back on 2012, federal funds continued to make their way to local projects and shovels continued to break ground for infrastructure projects. This led to...more

Eminent Domain Opinions Focus On 'Just Compensation'

Originally Published in Daily Journal, January 4, 2013 It has been quite a busy year for takings cases, and the state Court of Appeal provided one last published eminent domain opinion just before 2012 came to a close....more

The Cross-Fire Continues Over the Judge's Role in Limiting Appraisal Opinions in Eminent Domain Cases

It has been quite a busy year for takings cases. While our readers can soon expect our annual "Year in Review E-Alert," the California Court of Appeal decided to grace us with one more published eminent domain opinion just...more

You Can Receive Compensation for Goodwill IF...

The Court has once again reminded us that it takes its role as gate keeper seriously. This week, in an unpublished case, the Court of Appeal issued a decision that serves as a not-so-gentle reminder that business owners are...more

Options, Agreements, And Prior Appraisals: Admissibility Issues In Eminent Domain Trials

Originally Published in The Real Estate Finance Journal, December 17, 2012. In eminent domain proceedings, property owners are granted the right to have a jury determine just compensation. But the presentation of...more

Winery Which Has Plans For Pricy Premium Wine, But Has Not Yet Turned a Profit, Has No Compensable “Goodwill” When Land and Vines...

A winery which planned to increase sales revenues by developing a flagship estate cabernet wine using grapes grown on its own vineyard land, but has never been profitable in the past, does not have a claim for compensation...more

Eminent Domain: The Continuing Battle Over the Roles of Judge and Jury

Eminent domain cases are unique in that the roles of the judge and the jury do not match the typical civil jury trial experience where the jury is the arbiter of fact and the judge decides the law. In eminent domain, the...more

Court Decision on Loss of Goodwill Results in Sour Grapes for Business Owners

California is one of only a few states in which a business may recover for loss of goodwill when property is taken by eminent domain, but even here there are limitations on a business' right to recover for such damages. ...more

Lessons from a Long, Long Eminent Domain Battle

A few weeks ago, the California Court of Appeal issued an interesting unpublished decision detailing a long, drawn-out eminent domain battle in Riverside County. I haven't blogged about it yet because, well to be honest, it...more

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