Sheetz v. County of El Dorado

Fighting extortionate permit fees at the Supreme Court

Once his land was ready and all George needed was a county building permit, he was stunned when told he could have his permit, but only if he paid a so-called traffic impact fee of more than $23,000. George weighed the immense cost against the hard work he put into his land and his yearning for a retirement home, and he paid the fee under protest. ...

Dr. Gregory Ringenberg v. United States

Government’s bogus easements threaten family retreat and property rights

The government cannot take private property without the owner's consent unless it pays just compensation. Nor can the government create an easement where none would otherwise exist. Yet, the Forest Service is using every flimsy excuse it can find to take an easement for an access road that leads to nowhere, without paying for it. Dr. Ringenberg ...

Rhode Island Association of Coastal Taxpayers v. Jeffrey Willis

Rhode Island’s beach expansion law moves public beach onto private property

In America, the right to own, occupy, and use your private property is a cornerstone of individual freedom and protected by the Constitution. If the government takes your property, it must pay just compensation—even when it is taking the property for a "good" purpose.  Rhode Island lawmakers recently ignored these constitutional limits by enacti ...

Ladies having fun
HomeRoom, Inc. v. City of Shawnee, Kansas

Shared household ban harms families, housing, and due process

People choose to live with non-relatives for many reasons—they're new to town, they want to make friends and build a community, they have no family nearby, or they can't afford to buy a house or pay rent on a solo income. At a time when Americans are delaying marriage and families (in 2017, nearly 32% ...

Sabey parents reading to children
Joshua Sabey, et al. v. City of Waltham, Massachusetts, et al.

Parents defend custodial rights and children’s security from lawless search and seizure

Alarmed by her three-month-old son's 103-degree temperature and at the family pediatrician's urging, graduate student Sarah Perkins brought baby Cal to a hospital emergency room just a few miles from their home in Waltham, Massachusetts. Sarah's husband Josh Sabey, a documentary filmmaker, stayed home with the couple's toddler, Clarence.   Doctors ...

Mike Bordelon and Breezy Shores, LLC v. Baldwin County

Government reneges on building permit, unlawfully strips property rights

Some retirees consider the beach an ideal place to live out their remaining years. Not Mike Bordelon. Drawn to Alabama's Gulf Shores, the retired computer engineer sees its beaches through an entrepreneur's lens. So he decided to use his retirement savings for a new endeavor: vacation rental housing. Mike started by renovating condos and existing ...

California man protect his houseboat and his rights
Daniel Knight v. Richardson Bay Regional Authority

California man fights government overreach to protect his houseboat and his rights

Daniel Knight called Richardson Bay—in Marin County, California—home since he first dropped anchor there in 1999. For the 65-year-old retired truck driver with a fixed income, several medical problems, and no nearby family, boats have served as the only affordable form of housing.    Daniel lived on a fully operational, 35-foot sailboat, co ...

Alan DiPietro and his alpacas
DiPietro v. Town of Bolton, Massachusetts

Struggling alpaca farmer fights government-sanctioned home equity theft

Alan DiPietro has been raising alpacas and selling their fleece since 2008 in Bolton, Massachusetts, a small, pleasant town in the state's Nashoba Valley Region.  By 2014, Alan's alpacas needed more land, so he bought 34 acres that spanned Bolton and the adjacent Town of Stow. The property was undeveloped, so the 50-year-old former engineer ...

Kevin Fair, determined advocate, addressing a diverse audience with conviction and purpose.
Fair v. Continental Resources

Nebraska widower fights government-sanctioned home equity theft

The outside world came to a screeching halt for Kevin Fair in 2013. His wife, Terry, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and Kevin had to quit his job so he could care for her at their Scottsbluff, Nebraska, home where they'd lived for nearly two decades—the home was a wedding gift from Kevin's mother. ...