Christina M. Martin

Attorney Florida

Christina Martin is an attorney at PLF’s Florida office in Palm Beach Gardens. She litigates cases around the country to protect individual rights, property rights, and the rule of law.  She is admitted to the state bars of Florida and Oregon, as well as various federal courts, including the Supreme Court of the United States.

Since graduating law school in 2008, Christina has dedicated her career to advancing liberty and limiting the reach of government.  She started by working at a think tank, developing and advocating policies to limit state government and promote educational options for K-12 students.

During this time, she met a PLF client who faced significant fines and whose small moving business would have been shut down without PLF’s help.  Oregon law effectively gave competitors the power to ban new moving businesses. A PLF lawsuit challenged the law and swiftly ended the unfair regulation. From that time on, she was a huge PLF fan.

In 2012, Christina joined PLF to litigate for liberty. Since then, she has sued the government for stealing from individuals, violating free speech, and ignoring the very rules that the government is charged to uphold.

She still enjoys developing policy ideas for laws that better recognize and protect unalienable rights, but now she sues the government to protect individuals when the government violates those rights.

Christina earned a Bachelor of Science in Physics and a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from the University of Washington in Seattle. She earned her J.D. from Ave Maria School of Law in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and was an editor of the Ave Maria Law Review.

When not working, Christina enjoys painting landscapes and traveling with her husband.

Timbs v. Indiana

Excessive Fines Clause applies to all governments

PLF has joined a crucial case brought by our allies at Institute for Justice to address a situation faced by many PLF clients—fines and forfeitures that far outweigh their alleged offenses. Tyson Timbs argues in a petition to the U.S. Supreme Court that such disproportionate punishments by state and local governments violate the Eighth Amendment& ...

Pacetta, LLC v. The Town of Ponce Inlet

Asking the Supreme Court to revive property rights protections

Urged by the town of Ponce Inlet, Florida, Lyder and Simone Johnson bought a number of land parcels and planned a new development through their business, Pacetta, LLC. Town leaders wanted the development so badly, they began revamping the town’s comprehensive land use plan, which would not have allowed the project at the time. But after an el ...

Taylor v. Polhill, et al

Florida’s outdated licensing robs hearing, livelihoods

In Florida, you need a license to sell hearing aids. Dan Taylor of Melbourne, Florida, gave up his license after 30 years, because Florida’s outdated regulations were made for older models, not the updated, technologically sophisticated models he and his customers prefer. In a federal lawsuit on behalf of Dan, PLF argues that Florida’s ...

Nemhauser v. City of Mount Dora

City apologizes after violating First Amendment rights

What started as artistic expression in Mount Dora, Florida, escalated into a bureaucratic nightmare for Nancy Nemhauser and Lubomir Jastrzebski. When the couple painted a van Gogh-style “The Starry Night” mural on a wall outside their house, the city declared the art “graffiti” because it didn’t match the color of the ...

Rafaeli, LLC v. Oakland County

Michigan County Steals House for $8 Debt

In 2014, Oakland County, Michigan foreclosed on a home owned by Uri Rafaeli’s business—Rafaeli, LLC—over an $8.41 tax debt. The County sold the property for $24,500, and kept profits. Ditto for Andre Ohanessian, when the County seized and sold his property for $82,000, and pocketed every penny left over from the $6,000 tax debt. While mos ...

Coastal Rights Coalition v. California Coastal Commission

California coastal homeowners at risk by Coastal Commission’s illegal seawall policy

When coastal property owners seek permits for new residential development, the California Coastal Commission requires them to agree never to build a seawall to protect the structure from storms and erosion. This policy was imposed by fiat, without public notice, hearings, and opportunity for public comment, as required by the California Administra ...

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February 20, 2019

Supreme Court vindicates all Americans’ right to be free from excessive fines

Today the Supreme Court held that the U.S. Constitution protects individuals from being excessively fined by all levels of government in this country—not just the federal government. The decision in this case, Timbs v. Indiana, is a significant victory that limits the abusive use of fees and fines by state and local officials—abuse that frequen ...

February 14, 2019

Uri Rafaeli takes a stand for traditional property rights

Can the government constitutionally take your house if you are tardy paying an $8 property tax debt? PLF client Uri Rafaeli is asking the Michigan Supreme Court that very question. In 2014, Rafaeli was shocked to learn that Oakland County in Michigan had taken title to his $60,000 rental house to collect an $8.41 debt. ...

January 16, 2019

Supreme Court Set To Decide A Critical Property Ownership Case

Originally published by The Daily Caller, January 16, 2019. Much of what happens inside the Supreme Court is shrouded in mystery. So Rose Knick doesn't know why she has the rare distinction of having the court hear her case twice this session. But that won't stop spectators from guessing, especially with the unusual circumstances surrounding ...

January 10, 2019

Southwest ranchers are fighting back against federal bureaucrats’ abusive word games

Making a living ranching or farming in the harsh desert lands of American southwest is demanding enough. But federal bureaucrats have managed to make it even harder by playing word games to stretch the limits of federal law beyond recognition. That's the case for ranchers in Hidalgo County, New Mexico, where the U.S. Fish and ...

January 04, 2019

Former homeowner fights Gratiot County’s theft of home

In 2017, officials in Gratiot County, Michigan, seized Donald Freed's $97,000 home to pay an overdue tax debt of $1,100. The county sold his property at auction for $42,000 and kept all of the proceeds from the sale. Shockingly Michigan’s property tax law requires this all-too-common practice. It's a nice racket for the county, which ...

December 08, 2018

For $8.41 in Unpaid Taxes, the Government Took Uri Rafaeli’s House

Originally published by The Wall Street Journal, December 8, 2018. How Michigan misuses a procedure meant to target pirate ships and drug lords' mansions. Uri Rafaeli is an 83-year-old engineer and great-grandfather. He never expected the government to treat him like a drug dealer or gang banger. But last year the Michigan Court of Appeals ...