Eminent Domain

Acquiring property through the exercise of eminent domain can be a controversial and highly politicized process. Legal requirements must be met, procedures must be followed, environmental issues often arise, and property owners must be treated fairly and receive just compensation. Assuring that all these requirements are met requires skilled and knowledgeable counsel.
 
Best Best & Krieger LLP’s Eminent Domain practice group provides comprehensive guidance on all aspects of eminent domain and inverse condemnation, and litigating disputes when they arise. We have decades of experience representing all types of public agencies, including cities, counties, transportation agencies, school districts, water districts and other special districts in property acquisitions for public projects and infrastructure development. We also act for property owners and businesses in connection with public agency acquisitions of their property.
 
Shaping California’s Eminent Domain Law
Our eminent domain lawyers have handled thousands of acquisitions throughout California for every type of public project, including schools, highways, rail transit, blight removal, public housing, flood control facilities, private utility systems, water lines and reservoirs, parks, dams, endangered species habitats, power transmission, airports and courthouses. We are experienced in resolving all of the issues that can arise throughout the complex eminent domain process — from “right-to-take” challenges to high-stakes valuation and just-compensation disputes to inverse condemnation/regulatory taking claims. Our skilled litigators have represented clients in all forums, from public hearings to the courtroom, in trials and on appeal. We have secured numerous published court decisions and legislative changes that have helped shape eminent domain law in California.
 
Proactive Guidance and Comprehensive Representation
BB&K takes a proactive approach, advising clients from the pre-project planning stage through project completion, identifying and resolving issues and potential risks quickly, creatively and effectively. Working collaboratively with lawyers throughout the firm, we are able to leverage the knowledge and experience needed to successfully and cost-efficiently address all real estate, land use, environmental and other challenges that our clients face.
 
The Eminent Domain team advises and assists with:

  • Project planning and implementation
  • Site selection and property acquisition, including pre-condemnation rights of entry for testing and surveying
  • Property appraisals  
  • Statutory and regulatory requirements
  • Environmental compliance and land use issues
  • Review and preparation of purchase offers, developer agreements, licenses, leases, easements and deeds
  • Documentation for voluntary acquisitions
  • Preparing and obtaining Resolutions of Necessity
  • Prejudgment possession and eminent domain litigation
  • Relocation assistance


We regularly work with outside experts, such as appraisers, community relations consultants, relocation agents, title/escrow officers, geotechnical experts, and environmental consultants and engineers to assure a smooth process and the best possible outcome for our clients.


 
Peggy L. Barnes

Peggy L. Barnes

Paralegal*

(951) 826-8357

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Bruce Beach

Bruce Beach

Partner

(619) 525-1335

Areas of Focus: Economic Development, Real Estate & Affordable Housing | Eminent Domain | Municipal | Public Agency Litigation | Special Districts
John E. Brown

John E. Brown

Partner

(909) 483-6640

Areas of Focus: Comprehensive Code Enforcement | Education Law | Eminent Domain | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Special Districts
Marvin I. Cohen

Marvin I. Cohen

Paralegal*

(951) 826-8440

Areas of Focus: Bankruptcy | Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Christopher Deal

Christopher Deal

Partner

(949) 263-6567

Areas of Focus: Business | Eminent Domain | Labor & Employment | Labor & Employment Litigation | Real Estate | Wage & Hour Law
Scott Ditfurth

Scott Ditfurth

Partner

(951) 826-8209

Areas of Focus: Business Litigation | Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Special Districts | Transportation
Mark A. Easter

Mark A. Easter

Partner

(951) 826-8237

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Contracts & Construction | Special Districts
Guillermo A. Frias

Guillermo A. Frias

Of Counsel

(213) 787-2575

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Finance | Special Districts
James B. Gilpin

James B. Gilpin

Partner

(619) 525-1341

Areas of Focus: Economic Development, Real Estate & Affordable Housing | Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Contracts & Construction
John H. Holloway

John H. Holloway

Partner

(213) 617-7495

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Environmental Litigation | Hazardous Waste | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Nowland C. Hong

Nowland C. Hong

Of Counsel

(213) 787-2565

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Kimberly E. Hood

Kimberly E. Hood

Of Counsel

(916) 551-2087

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Labor & Employment | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Elizabeth W. Hull

Elizabeth W. Hull

Partner

(949) 263-2608

Areas of Focus: Economic Development, Real Estate & Affordable Housing | Eminent Domain | Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Land Use, Planning & Zoning | Municipal Law | Public-Private Partnerships
Kendall H. MacVey

Kendall H. MacVey

Partner

(951) 826-8226

Areas of Focus: California Public Utilities Commission | Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Special Districts
Heather A. McCoy

Heather A. McCoy

Paralegal*

(951) 826-8212

Areas of Focus: California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) | Eminent Domain | Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Environmental Litigation
Christopher Pisano

Christopher Pisano

Partner

(213) 617-7492

Areas of Focus: Business Litigation | Eminent Domain | Municipal | Public Agency Litigation
Brittany Reese

Brittany Reese

Paralegal*

(951) 826-8234

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Monica Smith

Monica Smith

Paralegal*

(909) 483-6650

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Real Estate
Gregory G. Snarr

Gregory G. Snarr

Associate

(951) 826-8202

Areas of Focus: Business Litigation | Eminent Domain | Labor & Employment | Municipal Law | Public Agency Labor & Employment | Special Districts
Lauren Strickroth

Lauren Strickroth

Partner

(951) 826-8346

Areas of Focus: Business | Business Litigation | Eminent Domain | Trusts & Estates
Karen L. Van Dijk

Karen L. Van Dijk

Partner

(949) 263-6563

Areas of Focus: Education Law | Education Litigation | Eminent Domain | Public Agency Litigation | Special Education | Student Affairs
Jamey M. Wyman

Jamey M. Wyman

Associate

(213) 787-2553

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Special Districts | Transportation
Shelby M. Young

Shelby M. Young

Paralegal*

(213) 617-7493

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Environmental Litigation | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation
Event Apr 25, 2017

25th Annual Valuation Seminar

IRWA Los Angeles Chapter 1

Business Litigator Christopher Deal Joins BB&K’s Irvine Office
Press Releases Apr 25, 2017

Business Litigator Christopher Deal Joins BB&K’s Irvine Office

New Partner Brings In-House Experience

Event Apr 4, 2017

Anatomy of an Appraiser's Deposition

3rd Annual IRWA Chapter 57 and SCCAI Joint Luncheon and Program

State Route 91 Express Lanes
Client Successes Mar 29, 2017

State Route 91 Express Lanes

BB&K Helped RCTC Pave the Way

BB&K Breaks on to Los Angeles Business Journal’s Top Law Firms List
Press Releases Mar 23, 2017

BB&K Breaks on to Los Angeles Business Journal’s Top Law Firms List

Firm’s Los Angeles Office Makes Debut at No. 173

Event Feb 9-10, 2017

Eminent Domain Conference

CLE International

Event Jan 31, 2017

Focusing on Critical Path: Relocation Assistance Issues in Federally Funded Projects

IRWA Los Angeles Chapter 1

Press Releases Jan 20, 2017

San Diego Super Lawyers and Rising Stars 2017

Congratulations to the BB&K Attorneys Recognized for their Work

BB&K Event Jan 19 - Feb 2, 2017

From Code Compliance to Fighting Fire-Traps: How to Deal with Dangerous Dwellings in Your City

Free Three-Part Webinar Series: Jan. 19., Jan. 26 and Feb. 2

The Trump Infrastructure Plan
Legal Alerts Jan 18, 2017

The Trump Infrastructure Plan

How BB&K Can Help Your Agency Position and Respond

Jamey Wyman Video Bio
Videos Nov 30, 2016

Jamey Wyman Video Bio

Associate

John Holloway Video Bio
Videos Nov 30, 2016

John Holloway Video Bio

Partner

Elizabeth Hull Video Bio
Videos Nov 30, 2016

Elizabeth Hull Video Bio

Partner

Richard T. Egger Video Bio
Videos Nov 18, 2016

Richard T. Egger Video Bio

Partner

John Brown Video Bio
Videos Nov 18, 2016

John Brown Video Bio

Partner

Lauren Strickroth Video Bio
Videos Nov 18, 2016

Lauren Strickroth Video Bio

Partner

Best in Law: Want to Cut Legal Costs? Avoid Litigation
Authored Articles & Publications Oct 10, 2016

Best in Law: Want to Cut Legal Costs? Avoid Litigation

BB&K Partner Lauren Strickroth Provides Litigation Cost-Saving Tips in the Press-Enterprise

Event Sep 13, 2016

Case Study on Water Quality Driven Projects in Orange County

IRWA Orange County Chapter 67

Client Successes Jul 26, 2016

California Supreme Court Sides with Public Agencies on Precondemnation Access Issue

BB&K Partner Kendall MacVey Filed Amicus Curiae Brief

California Supreme Court Reverses Ruling on Right-of-Entry Statutes
Legal Alerts Jul 21, 2016

California Supreme Court Reverses Ruling on Right-of-Entry Statutes

Reversal Allows Public Agencies to Access Properties for Necessary Inspections and Testing Prior to Eminent Domain Actions

Press Releases Jul 6, 2016

Three BB&K Attorneys Listed as Top Lawyers in Coachella Valley

Palm Springs Life Magazine’s Annual List Includes Partners Robert Hargreaves, Douglas Phillips and G. Henry Welles

Event Mar 10, 2016

Hot Topics in Public Infrastructure & Right of Way

Public Works Officers Institute & Expo

Partner Kendall H. MacVey and BB&K Honored by Federal Bar Association, Inland Empire Chapter
Press Releases Feb 29, 2016

Partner Kendall H. MacVey and BB&K Honored by Federal Bar Association, Inland Empire Chapter

A Founding Member and Past President, MacVey Hailed for Dedication and Leadership

Event Feb 26, 2016

Multi-Parcel Acquisition Programs and Prejudgment Possession

CLE International’s Southern California Eminent Domain Conference

Event Feb 17, 2016

All Danced Out?: No Goodwill For A Nonprofit Performing Arts Company On Federal Land

International Right of Way Association

Press Releases Jan 26, 2016

Seven BB&K Attorneys Recognized by 2016 San Diego Super Lawyers Magazine

Five Partners on Super Lawyers List, Two Additional Attorneys on the Super Lawyers Rising Stars List

Event Nov 12, 2015

All Danced Out?: No Goodwill For A Nonprofit Performing Arts Company On Federal Land

International Right of Way Association

Event Oct 16, 2015

2015 Education Seminar - Water Supply & Impacts

International Right of Way Association

Event Sep 9, 2015

All Danced Out?: No Goodwill For A Nonprofit Performing Arts Company On Federal Land

International Right of Way Association

Event Sep 2, 2015

All Danced Out?: No Goodwill For A Nonprofit Performing Arts Company On Federal Land

International Right of Way Association

Client Successes May 26, 2015

BB&K Files Successful Amicus Brief in Eminent Domain Case

Partner Kendall H. MacVey argued that the Mello-Roos Act can be used to finance acquisitions by eminent domain

Press Releases Mar 4, 2015

Six BB&K Attorneys Named Top Lawyers in San Diego

San Diego Magazine Picks Attorneys from a Variety of Practices for its List

Press Releases Jan 22, 2015

Six BB&K Attorneys in San Diego Included on the 2015 List of San Diego Super Lawyers or Super Lawyer

Congratulations to These Attorneys

Event Jan 15, 2015

Roadway and Transit Rights of Way: Understanding the Legal and Practical Issues

Lorman Education Services

Ruling That Curtails Public Agencies’ Abilities to Get Order Protecting Project Planning Inspections is Decertified
Legal Alerts Jul 7, 2014

Ruling That Curtails Public Agencies’ Abilities to Get Order Protecting Project Planning Inspections is Decertified

Supreme Court Decides to Review Lower Court Case

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