Where Does the Government’s Money Come From to ‘Take” Private Property?

by: Michael Realbuto
13 Jul 2023
If you read the title of today’s post, I can guarantee you that the money does not grow on trees! As you know, the government is required to pay “just compensation” when it takes private property, and that value can vary from hundreds of dollars to multiple millions of dollars depending on the size and... Read More

A Primer on Relocation Benefits in New Jersey

by: Michael Realbuto
10 Jul 2023
In New Jersey, persons displaced by a governmental taking, assuming they satisfy all statutory requirements, are entitled to relocation assistance under the Relocation Assistance Act, N.J.S.A. 20:4-1 et seq. (state implementation of requirements of federal Uniform Relocation Assistance Law), the Relocation Assistance Law of 1967, N.J.S.A. 52:31(b)-1 et seq. (applicable to all displacements, including condemnation... Read More

The Importance of Appraisers in a Condemnation Case

by: Michael Realbuto
6 Jul 2023
As we discussed in our “10 Questions to Ask an Eminent Domain Attorney” post, it is critical to ask your counsel about their relationship with prospective experts such as appraisers, engineers, and planners. After all, expert witnesses play a huge role in determining the successes and credibility of your case. In this blog we are... Read More

The Distinction Between the Government’s “Police Power” and the Power Of “Eminent Domain”

by: Michael Realbuto
5 Jul 2023
There is a common misconception that the government’s “police power” is synonymous with its power of “eminent domain.” This blog aims to dispel any confusion by explaining the distinction between the two terms. Eminent domain is the inherent right or power of the government to “take” private property for public use. The New Jersey Supreme... Read More

Real Property Tax Appeals Versus Eminent Domain Cases

by: Michael Realbuto
30 Jun 2023
The real estate tax appeal process can ultimately lead to reduced tax burdens for New Jersey property owners…that is the good news, and our firm specializes in representing property owners across N.J. in those types of cases. However, unique situations may arise during a tax appeal that can pose a dilemma for owners. One such... Read More

Oklahoma! (Childers v. Arrowood)

by: Joseph Grather
29 Jun 2023
“Where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain….” Wait, nope, that’s for another blog. Another strange takings case from our Owners Counsel of America colleague Robert Thomas, as reported in his Inverse Condemnation Blog (God only knows how he finds these cases!) This one comes from the Oklahoma Supreme Court and involves the taking of... Read More

NJ’s Senior Homeowners and Renters Could See Reduced Property Tax Bills

by: Allan Zhang
27 Jun 2023
New Jersey Governor Murphy and state legislators have purportedly reached an agreement to enact a bill to help New Jersey’s seniors stay in New Jersey. Legislators proposed a bill titled “StayNJ Act” which would effectively cut property tax bills for homeowners and renters ages 65 and older starting in 2026. The bill was introduced by... Read More

Sunday Thoughts on Jury Selection

by: Joseph Grather
26 Jun 2023
20th Century Fox. It’s a rainy Sunday here in Morristown three days removed from completing my second live jury trial post-Covid.  Glad to say the jury rendered a verdict in favor of the property owners.  I should say former property owners because it was a condemnation valuation trial.   That means the jury was called on... Read More

Tejas Motel v City of Mesquite – Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals

by: Joseph Grather
16 Jun 2023
2023-3-22 Tejas-Motel-L-L-C-v-City-of-Mesquite-No-22-10321-5th-Cir Catching up on some recent takings cases (after watching Jury Duty for a week. LOL). The Fifth Circuit determined that a property owner could not “relitigate a takings claim in federal court that was previously dismissed in state court.”  Full text of opinion above. The owner operated a small motel in the City... Read More

SCOTUS “Keep the Change” Tax Sale Case is Already Making Waves in New Jersey

by: Michael Realbuto
14 Jun 2023
A few weeks ago, our firm blogged about Tyler v. Hennepin Cnty., No. 22-166 (May 25, 2023), which was a huge win in the United States Supreme Court for property owners facing a tax sale due to delinquent taxes. To paint the full picture about Tyler, the property owner failed to pay taxes on her... Read More