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Eminent Domain & Real Estate Valuation

Fox Rothschild has one of the leading eminent domain and real estate litigation practices in the country. Join David Snyder, co-chair of the firm's Condemnation Practice Group, as he provides useful information and commentary regarding developments in the law, updates on projects and helpful tips regarding eminent domain and other real estate litigation related topics. This is an excellent resource for real estate professionals, property owners and condemnors who may be embarking upon a new project.
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Fair Housing Defense

Join Fox Rothschild attorneys Scott Badami and Christian Moffitt as they provide insight and information on and compliance with the Fair Housing Act and its state and local counterparts. The blog provides a forum for issues of interest to apartment owners and management companies as well as professional management employees.
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Recent Blog Posts

  • Catching Up With Fair Housing Defense Blog Reader Questions I am always gratified to receive comments from Fair Housing Defense blog readers. Many enjoy the light and breezy writing style involving what could be, shall we say, a dry topic. Some, however, are a little less kind – one reader last week thought I didn’t know what I was talking about, and used a colorful metaphor. Which is fine and why I don’t publish the comments. Got to love the internet. In any event, several readers have asked me... More
  • HUD Files New Emotional Support Animal Fair Housing Disability Discrimination Case Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued a press release concerning a new case HUD charged in Oklahoma. Specifically, HUD alleged that the landlords of a rental property violated the Fair Housing Act (FHA) by rejecting the emotional support animal request submitted with a veteran with disabilities. As I have written many times, responding to reasonable accommodation requests from disabled residents is a critical part of apartment (or in this case, rental home) management.... More
  • HUD Files New Familial Status Fair Housing Case A couple of weeks ago, the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) announced that it was charging two property owners and two employees at a multifamily property in Kansas with violating the Fair Housing Act (FHA). In the case, HUD asserts that the defendants engaged in familial status discrimination by terminating the lease of a resident who asked if her grandchild could be permitted to live with her. HUD learned of the case when a female resident filed a... More
  • N.C. House Again Attempts Eminent Domain Constitutional Amendment The NC House is considering a bill that would result in an eminent domain amendment to the NC Constitution. House Bill 3 would place the amendment on the November 2018 ballot. The bill would not allow private property to be taken by eminent domain, or to be condemned, except for public use. The bill does not define public use. The US Constitution and many states have similar requirement. Another bill adds communications and natural gas facilities and pipelines to those projects... More
  • Just Who Can be Named as Responsible Parties in a Fair Housing Cases? A Fair Housing Defense blog reader sent in a question concerning the number of housing discrimination cases filed and if there was a breakdown with respect to those filed against management as contrasted with those filed against maintenance personnel. To my knowledge, while HUD absolutely tracks the annual number of cases filed and further breaks down the complaints by the protected class of the person bringing the action, I am not aware of any data concerning claims filed against service... More
  • Indiana Considers Eminent Domain Bill Indiana is considering a bipartisan eminent domain bill. House Bill 1260 made it out of the House of Representatives with a 95-0 vote and is expected to go before a Senate committee Monday. The bill is in response to a proposed freight train line by Great Lakes Basin Transportation. The proposed bill, which would take effect July 1 if it makes it out of the Senate and Gov. Eric Holcomb signs it, states that any rail line must follow Indiana’s... More
  • Want Some Numbers Addressing Fair Housing Complaints and Compliance? Read On. The beginning of the year is always a good time to check in to see how many and what type of housing discrimination complaints were filed in the previous year. While HUD has not released final numbers for 2016, the most recent annual data reveals: HUD’s annual fair housing budget remains well over $60 million. In 2015, HUD (and its partner agencies) completed 8,249 fair housing investigations, which was essentially flat as compared with 8,361 investigations in 2014. Of those complaints,... More
  • Judge Confirms Our $1.25 Million Jury Verdict I tried a case in York County, PA in July involving a condemnation of the former York County Prison. My clients purchased the property in the ‘80s and were waiting for the right time to develop the property when it was taken by the City of York RDA. The RDA claimed it was worth about $65,000. We presented evidence that the property was worth $1,250,000. After less than ½ hour, the Jury returned a verdict of $1,250,000 – the full amount we... More
  • Dr. Ben Carson Has His Senate Confirmation Hearing to Become the Next HUD Secretary. Here is How it Went. Yesterday, Dr. Ben Carson had his confirmation hearing before the U.S. Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, which is considering his nomination to be the next Secretary of the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD). Many of us interested in federal housing policy were curious to hear what Dr. Carson had to say concerning the Fair Housing Act as well as any HUD initiatives as what he has previously said either disagrees with or does not address many... More
  • Here Are The Top Ten Fair Housing Defense Blog Posts From 2016 Time for my favorite Fair Housing Defense blog post of the year.  With apologies to David Letterman, here are the Top Ten entries from 2016, as calculated by the number of reads (yes, my law firm tracks everything).  You can click on any entry to read the post: #1: DOJ Settles Another Familial Status Fair Housing Act Case — This Time for $100,000 (February 26, 2016) #2: Colorado House Passes Bill To Criminalize False Service/Companion Animal Requests (April 1, 2016) #3: First... More
  • NC Court Of Appeals Blocks Payment To Property Owners The N.C. Court of Appeals has issued a stay of a Forsyth County Superior Court Judge’s order directing the N.C. Department of Transportation to make payments to property owners in the path of the Winston-Salem Northern Beltway. Forsyth Superior Court Judge John O. Craig entered an order would have set in motion a procedure for the DOT to begin paying landowners who won an inverse condemnation ruling last June from the N.C. Supreme Court. The State’s motion argued that Judge Craig’s... More
  • Hartford Must Pay Extra $3M For Property Taken Near Stadium A Connecticut Judge has ruled that the City of Hartford must pay an additional $3 million for property it acquired through eminent domain for development around Dunkin’ Donuts Park two years ago. The City acquired the three parcels in November 2014 for $1.98 million, based on the City’s appraisals. The property owner, Covered Bridge Ventures, appealed the price and a trial was held in February 2016. “The most astounding shortcoming of both the City’s appraising experts is that neither of them... More
  • Here is a Short Management/Resident Checklist When Entering Into a Residential Lease With the end of 2016 in sight, I thought this might be a good time for a short landlord/tenant checklist concerning important issues that management and residents should understand when dealing with a residential lease: What is the lease term? One year? Six months? Month-to-month? Another term? How is the lease extended? What is the notice to vacate procedure? What are the deadlines? What additional costs (if any) are not included in the monthly rent? Application fee? Parking? Electric? Trash? Water? And... More
  • TX Railroad Developer May Not Be A “Railroad” For Eminent Domain Purposes A Texas state judge has ruled that a case must go to trial where the issue is whether a high-speed rail project developer has the authority to survey private lands and pursue eminent domain in order to draw the best route for a train that would run from Dallas to Houston. In Texas Central Railroad & Infrastructure Inc. v. Calvin V. House, Texas Central Railroad & Infrastructure Inc. filed a motion for summary judgment asking the court to deem the... More
  • Does A Resident Need a “Disability” in Order to Qualify for a Service or Emotional Support Animal? I had three clients in three states (one near the Pacific Ocean, one in the Midwest, and one in the middle Atlantic) all reach out to me with a variation of the same question concerning service and/or companion animals: what happens if the resident is not disabled but still seeks an emotional support animal? Does management have to approve that request? The fact pattern typically comes up when a resident or an applicant submits a reasonable accommodation request. And that accommodation... More