When public projects are being constructed, surrounding property owners typically experience construction impacts, such as noise, dust, fumes, vibration and road detours. Typically, absent a physical taking of property, those construction impacts are not compensable under an inverse condemnation claim unless the property owner experiences a direct, substantial, and peculiar impact. While this has generally been the law in California for quite some time, a recent published California Court of Appeal decision, Today’s IV, Inc. v. Los Angeles County Metropolitan ...
Providing listeners a convenient and concise medium to access timely reports on important land use topics, Nossaman’s recent podcast offerings make a great addition to your professional playlist.
First, check out Nossaman’s own Digging Into Land Use Law podcast, which covers the development of all things in, on or above the ground. Recently, I recorded the episode “Valuation and Damages: Assessing COVID-19’s Economic Impact.” Changes in how businesses operate, restrictions on property use and reduced revenues brought on by mandated closures due to COVID-19 have had ...
Sometimes a public agency ends up abandoning an eminent domain proceeding, even after the property owner or business has moved from the property. Under Code of Civil Procedure, section 1268.620, if a defendant “moves from property” and the agency subsequently dismisses the suit, the owner/business may be able to recover payment of all damages proximately caused by the proceeding and its dismissal. One would think determining whether an owner/occupant has “moved” from the property would not be an issue for dispute. But a recent unpublished California Court of Appeal ...
Like the vast majority of general civil litigation, eminent domain matters usually settle before going to trial. The resolution is typically documented in either a stipulated judgment or a settlement agreement. What is unique to eminent domain, however, is that the settlements oftentimes take place before the public project is fully constructed, meaning the parties are resolving their claims based on the "project as proposed," without seeing the actual finished product or fully understanding its impacts on the property. In documenting a settlement, property owners can ...
In a recent unpublished Court of Appeal decision, Downs v. City of Redding (October 30, 2018), the Court took up two distinct issues: (a) whether a contractor’s use of property for construction staging constitutes a taking when such use is not authorized by the agency, and (b) whether "just compensation" requires payment of damages for the taking of a tree. Both of these issues are common occurrences in many of the projects we work on and while the Court’s holdings may not come as a surprise, they are a good reminder of the fairness and equity courts apply to such issues ...
California provides a special procedural remedy whenever a lawsuit implicates a defendant's First Amendment right to petition or free speech. The procedure is commonly referred to as the "anti-SLAPP." (SLAPP is an acronym for Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation.) Under this procedure, the trial court evaluates the merits of the lawsuit using a summary judgment like process, often at an early stage of the litigation. In a recent unpublished decision, the California Court of Appeal affirmed the propriety of applying this procedure when a plaintiff is ...
On January 19, 2012, the California Court of Appeal issued an unpublished decision addressing this very question. Specifically, in Flying J, Inc. v. Department of Transportation, Case No. F060545, the Court of Appeal affirmed the dismissal of plaintiff's claim for lost profits, finding that plaintiff's evidence was not sufficiently comparable in character and its calculations relied on too much conjecture about future events.
Plaintiff Flying J operates truck stops. In 1997, it purchased an 18.8 acre parcel adjacent to State Routes 14 and 58 in the Mojave ...
Last April, we reported on a bizarre case arising out of the City of San Clemente's attempt to down zone a piece of property. The trial court had concluded that the down zoning constituted a taking and ordered the City to rescind a decision supported by that down zoning. The City had denied an application to develop the property because the application did not conform to the current general plan and zoning ordinance (the City seems to have sidestepped the fact that the development applications included applications to amend the general plan and zoning).
In addition to a writ of mandate ...
You may recall that last year in Ridgewater Associates LLC v. Dublin San Ramon Services District, the California Court of Appeal held that a subsequent purchaser cannot recover for inverse condemnation where (1) it knowingly purchases property impacted by a government taking, and (2) the purchase price reflects the property's condition in light of the government impacts. See Buyer Beware: Improper Sale Documentation Results in Waiver of Inverse Condemnation Claim by Brad Kuhn and Rick Rayl. While the decision was originally published at 184 Cal.App.4th 629, the ...
A new bill -- AB 238 -- is working its way through the State Assembly which would require a reduction in compensation payable to a successful plaintiff in an inverse condemnation action in direct proportion to the owner’s percentage of fault in causing damages to the owner’s property. While the doctrine of comparative fault is one of the cornerstones of tort law, it is rarely applicable to inverse condemnation actions.
Ever since the seminal decision in Albers v. County of Los Angeles (1965) 62 Cal.2d 250, there has been a more or less bright line distinction between the strict ...
California Eminent Domain Report is a one-stop resource for everything new and noteworthy in eminent domain. We cover all aspects of eminent domain, including condemnation, inverse condemnation and regulatory takings. We also keep track of current cases, project announcements, budget issues, legislative reform efforts and report on all major eminent domain conferences and seminars in the Western United States.
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