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January 24th, 2013 — By — In News & Events

In Miami Beach with the American Law Institute Eminent Domain & Land Valuation Course

We are in Miami Beach this week with eminent domain and land use attorneys, appraisers, engineers and other related professionals from across the country attending the American Law Institute (ALI) Eminent Domain & Land Valuation Litigation Course.  As it has been for the last 30 years, the panelists are excellent and the topics both interesting and relevant.

This morning Prof. Gideon Kanner presented a national case law update followed by Dana Berliner of the Institute for Justice with a discussion regarding the recent legislative reforms and trends state by state.  Today also included two panels on condemning underwater mortgages, the controversial plan by Mortgage Resolution Partners to solve the housing crisis using eminent domain to acquire underwater mortgages to avoid potential future foreclosures.  Panelists included Prof. Robert Hockett of Cornell Law and Owner’s Counsel Hawaii Member, Robert Thomas, who outlined the concept, which Prof. Hockett wrote about in his paper: “It Takes a Village: Municipal Condemnation Proceedings and Public/Private Partnerships for Mortgage Loan Modification, Value Preservation, and Local Economic Recovery.”  Prof. Hockett mentioned that he created a basic template for the use of eminent domain to acquire underwater mortgages about 5 years ago which he started to share with various interested parties.  He also said that MRP’s plan is a version of his original template.

The first session was followed by a panel of practitioners including Owners’ Counsel New Jersey Member, Tony Della Pella, California Member, Ed Burg, and Emeritus Member, Ed McKirdy, as well as Gideon Kanner and New York attorney, Charles Webb.  The discussion was compelling.  We’ll share more about it later as we are off to listen in on a panel presentation that we don’t want to miss.