Johnson v. City of East Orange

New Jersey family fights government-sanctioned property theft

In 2014, Lynette Johnson bought commercial property in East Orange, New Jersey, for her son and daughter to run their businesses. Unfortunately, Lynette never received notice of her tax assessments, the eventual tax lien, and foreclosure. By the time her tax lien was foreclosed in 2018, she owed close to $20,000. The city sold the property to a pri ...

Riddick v. City of Malibu

Holding local California governments accountable for banning “granny flats”

Jason and Elizabeth Riddick live in Malibu, California, with their three children. Elizabeth's mother, Renee Sperling, is aging with several disabilities, including immunodeficiency. The Riddicks seek to add an attached ADU onto their existing single-family home in order to provide Renee a safe and private place to live. The Riddicks' modest propos ...

Tyler v. Hennepin County

92-year-old widow fights home equity theft in Minnesota

When crime moved into Geraldine Tyler's Minneapolis neighborhood in 2010, she moved out. The elderly widow was living alone and, sharing her family's alarm about her safety, she hastily left behind the one-bedroom condo she owned and rented an apartment in a safer area. While Geraldine and her family focused on her health and safety, unpaid propert ...

Shands v. City of Marathon

Government takes family’s land and uses gimmicks to avoid paying for it

The Shands family has owned Shands Key, a small Florida island, since the 1950s. Purchased by World War II surgeon and Mississippi hospital owner Dr. R.E. Shands, the island was originally zoned for residential use and could have been developed with at least seven homes. Today, however, government regulations designed to protect the environment pro ...

Erica Perez
Perez v. Wayne County

Family fights home equity theft to protect the American Dream

Though Erica Perez and her family spent most of their lives in New Jersey, they had their sights set on Detroit to join their relatives who already lived there. In 2012, Erica and her father Romualdo bought a property containing a four-unit apartment building and a dilapidated single-family home in Detroit for $60,000. They spent three years fixing ...

Hawkins v. Haaland

Fighting to restore water control to rightful government authority

Oregon's Upper Klamath Basin has long supported wildlife, as well as the livelihoods of ranchers, farmers, and other landowners. Some water rights belong to the Indian tribes by treaty, with the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) charged with exercising these rights consistent with the best interests of the Indian tribes, as well as the general pu ...