Land Use/Property Rights
The field of land use addresses the rights of landowners to develop and use their property without excessive government regulation. It includes regulatory takings, permitting and licensing, and efforts by municipalities to modify or terminate existing uses of property.
Stuart has litigated many complex land-use cases, some of which are described in the appeals and writs, civil rights, and regulatory takings sections of this website.
Representative Prominent Land-Use Cases
Monks v. City of Rancho Palos Verdes
167 Cal.App.4th 263, 84 Cal.Rptr.3d 75 (2008).
This landmark decision is the only successful permanent regulatory taking claim in the history of California. It resulted in a damage award of $4,250,000 plus the revocation of a development ban on ocean view property worth $20,000,000.
State of New York v. Shore Realty Corp.
759 F.2d 1032 (2d Cir. 1985).
This successful lawsuit by the State of New York against a developer who knowingly bought a hazardous waste disposal site is the leading case in the United States on the strict liability of subsequent owners for the remediation of dangerous environmental conditions. It resulted in national legislation requiring “due diligence” investigations before real estate purchases. This decision is reproduced in many law school textbooks on environmental law and has been cited as a precedent in thousands of judicial decisions.
Gammoh v. City of Anaheim
2003 WL 40795 (Cal. App. 2003) and
City of La Habra v. Gammoh
2004 WL 2898160 (Cal. App. 2004).
These challenges to unconstitutional overregulation of adult cabarets resulted in record-setting payments to the plaintiff of over $7 million.
VH Property Corp. v. City of Rancho Palos Verdes
622 F.Supp.2d 958 (C.D. Cal. 2009).
Removed unjustified municipal restrictions on residential land development, resulting in $55 million benefit to landowner.