OCA Blog

January 23rd, 2012 — By  Robert H. Thomas — In Articles

Motion for Leave to File Brief Amicus Curiae and Brief Amicus Curiae of Owners Counsel of America in Support of the Petitioner, River Center LLC v. Dormitory Authority of the State of New York, No. 11-922 (cert. petition filed Jan. 23, 2012), Robert H. Thomas (Hawaii), Counsel of Record.

By Robert H. Thomas

This case involved one of the largest condemnations of private property in the history of New York City.  At issue were important questions concerning the Just Compensation Clause of the Fifth Amendment.  The brief argues that all evidence of value must be considered by a reviewing court which cannot disregard evidence that a potential buyer of the property would consider important in assessing value and that the Fifth Amendment protects the right of both a property owner and developer to testify to the property’s value.

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July 17th, 2011 — By  Michael Rikon, CRE — In Articles

“Moving the Cat into the Hat: The Pursuit of Fairness in Condemnation, or, Whatever Happened to Creating a Partnership of Planning?” by Michael Rikon (New York)

By Michael Rikon, CRE

In this 2011 article, Mr. Rikon criticizes Article 2 of New York’s Eminent Domain Procedure Law (EDPL), the procedure used to approve and challenge condemnation. The article comments on the fact that New York is often oblivious to property rights in an eminent domain context.

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June 17th, 2011 — By  Hertha L. Lund — In Articles

“Kelo in the Country…HB198 and the taking of rural property” by Hertha Lund (Montana)

By Hertha L. Lund

This article argues against Montana House Bill 198 that seeks to grant the power of eminent domain to a Canadian power company in order for that company to acquire private property throughout Montana for the purposes of constructing a private (for profit) “merchant” transmission line.  Ms. Lund writes “rural landowners should not be sacrificed in the false choice between ‘development’ or ‘property rights.'”

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July 1st, 2009 — In Articles

“Fair Market Value in a Down Market” by Alan T. Ackerman (Michigan)

This excerpt from the American Bar Association’s 2009 annual review questions the ability to establish fair market value during a down real estate market. Mutual motivation and market timing are two key factors examined.

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July 1st, 2008 — In Articles

“The Perils of Prior Appraisal” by Michael Rikon (New York)

In this 2008 article, Mr. Rikon supports New York’s two-step appraisal law for inverse condemnation but cautions against requesting draft appraisals since they are admissible at trial and may create problems by undermining the credibility of the appraiser. The role of the Appraisal Foundation and the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) are discussed as related to this issue.

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July 1st, 2006 — In Articles

“Compensation for Loss of Visibility to and View from the Owner’s Property” by James L. Thompson (Maryland)

The general law covering this issue (related to inverse condemnation) varies from state to state. The authors cite numerous case examples in this 2006 article, including their current litigation, and organize the disparities into three categories: legal principles, collateral factors and practice tips.

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July 1st, 2005 — By  Robert H. Thomas — In Articles

“Recent Developments in Public Use and Pretext in Eminent Domain” by Robert H. Thomas (Hawaii)

By Robert H. Thomas

The courts response to the increasing number of landowners challenging government condemnation is examined in this 2005 article. The issue of pretext is illustrated by litigation in Hawaii involving a private property owner’s claim that the county had delegated its power of eminent domain to a developer.

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June 1st, 2005 — By  Keith M. Babcock — In Articles

“The Public Use Requirement in Eminent Domain Law” by Keith M. Babcock and Brady R. Thomas (South Carolina)

By Keith M. Babcock

The elasticity of South Carolina’s legal interpretation of public use is the focus of this article. The South Carolina cases cited are from Jasper County and the cities of Charleston and Columbia. The landmark Kelo v. City of New London case is discussed, as well as select cases from Michigan and Hawaii.

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