Eminent domain is the power of the government to take private property for public use, in return for just compensation. What exactly constitutes public use and what amount of compensation is just are two of the major issues in any attempted exercise of eminent domain. Leonard S. Levine, Attorney at Law understands the delicate balance of interests at play in any exercise of eminent domain. My experience representing various parties engaged in condemnation proceedings gives me a high-level view of the process. This enables me to advocate strongly for my client, while appreciating other perspectives and recognizing opportunities to reach negotiated solutions. However, when litigation is necessary to protect my client’s rights, I am confident in my ability to deliver a compelling argument to judge and jury.
The Supreme Court significantly expanded the government’s condemnation power in 2005 with its decision in the controversial Kelo case, where the Court ruled that the public purpose of reviving a blighted area was sufficient to allow seizing private property and transferring ownership to a private developer. However, the subsequent failure of the Kelo developers to make good on their promise has produced a cautionary tale for any government entity considering a similar exercise of its takings power. Leonard S. Levine, Attorney at Law examines all aspects of a proposed eminent domain taking and provide astute guidance on the legal issues. I help our clients weight the costs and benefits of all available strategies and set realistic goals for negotiation and litigation.
Not every exercise of eminent domain has to result in an outright seizure of property. Government entities and property owners can reach negotiated solutions that enable public and private use of the parcels in question. Conversely, governments sometimes take actions that do not fit the classic definition of eminent domain, but nevertheless infringe on property owners’ rights and diminish property value. Leonard S. Levine, Attorney at Law manages a variety of conflicts that fall short of condemnation, such as:
When negotiated solutions are possible, protracted litigation benefits no one. I take a practical approach to resolving issues that advances my client’s goals in a timely and cost-effective manner.