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San Diego Eminent Domain

Posted on February 15 2015 by Gabriela Ocampo

There is a movement afoot among California’s municipalities to bring back to the scene the infamous redevelopment agencies (RDAs) that were outlawed five years ago in 2011. San Diego home and business owners would likely suffer greatly if a referendum to reinstate RDAs indeed materializes and passes. Sadly, San Diego has not been free from eminent domain abuse in the past, and a new era of “redevelopment projects” would open the doors to yet more abuses.

San Diego Eminent Domain Abuses

Some of the most notable cases of the city or county of San Diego using eminent domain powers to mistreat property owners are as follows:

  • The Gran Havana Cigar and Coffee Lounge was condemned for the sake of freeing up land to build a Marriott hotel. Another Marriott was located within eye-shot of the Gran Havana.
  • The City of San Diego was sued by the County of San Diego for condemning properties for redevelopment despite their non-blighted status. In fact, these homes rose in market value by 55% over the previous five years.
  • The family-owned Alsco laundering business has been threatened with condemnation of property, which has been in the family for over 115 years. The reason: New condos and retail stores need to go in.
  • The threat of condemnation also loom over many business owners on El Cajon Blvd. due to the proposal to build private condos along their stretch of the road.

A similar story could be told for many other residents and business owners who have been pressured by government agencies to give up their property for illegitimate causes. In other cases, the cause is just but a low-ball offer is thrown at the property owner with a “take-it-or-leave-it” attitude. The idea is, “Take that offer, or we will take your property anyway.”

Statewide Eminent Domain Issues

With the coming of the new, controversial high-speed rail system, eminent domain is more than ever on the minds of most Californians. Over 150 pieces of land have already been seized for the rail line, and more seizures are sure to come. While the merits of such a high-speed train are, perhaps, arguable, it is imperative that all property owners receive full and fair compensation for their loss. The same basic situation arises whenever state roads are built or expanded. Even projects that are truly necessary and public in nature cannot be allowed to proceed at the cost of private property rights.

Where Can San Diego Residents Go for Help If Threatened by Eminent Domain?

Century Law Group is the number one law firm in the San Diego area that has consistently stood with and fought for home owners and business owners over the years. They have an well-seasoned, expert staff of attorneys who are familiar with the details of eminent domain law. They have helped innumerable property owners win against powerful government agencies like Caltrans, Metro, the City or County of Sand Diego, etc. If you go to them for assistance, you will find they have fought and won cases very similar to yours many times before.

Century Law Group knows how to effectively negotiate with condemning agencies, what tactics to expect from them, and how to beat them in court. They often see government agencies back away from illegal seizures and low-ball offers. Their reputation precedes them and inspires such fear in government agencies that they get a favorable out-of-court settlement in 90% of their cases. Do not go it alone in an eminent domain battle when the skilled team of lawyers at Century Law Group stand ready to come to your aid.