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Regulatory Takings

Protecting Property Owners from Regulatory Takings

When the government takes private property for public use, the U.S. Constitution guarantees that the owner is entitled to just compensation. When environmental regulations effectively create the same situation – by enacting a statute, issuing a regulation, or refusing to authorize an activity requiring a government-issued permit, thereby taking away most or all of a property's value – Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr's attorneys help owners in two ways:

  • By overturning unconstitutional regulations
  • By obtaining just compensation for regulatory takings

We provide advice, counsel, and representation for commercial and residential property owners who have had their property values diminished by regulations and statutes.

About Regulatory Takings: A Most Complicated Area of Law

Regulatory Takings law is among the most complicated areas of law. Based solely on twelve words of the Fifth Amendment to the U. S. Constitution known as the "Takings Clause," courts have attempted to define when regulation goes too far and should be recognized as a "taking." Regulatory Takings law is based on hundreds of often inconsistent federal and state judicial interpretations of the Takings Clause.

The U.S. Supreme Court has interpreted the Takings Clause to include not only physical occupation of private land, such as for a road, but also when private property is taken due to regulatory issues.

Experienced Legal Representation: Navigating Regulatory Takings Law

Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr's Environmental attorneys have worked in Regulatory Takings law for more than a decade, and have handled one of the most prominent regulatory takings cases in Pennsylvania. In this very complicated area, our group offers the experience and knowledge needed to litigate cases across the country, even up to the U.S. Supreme Court. In addition to the many courts in which our attorneys are admitted to practice, our Regulatory Takings lawyers are also admitted to the courts that deal with regulatory takings on a daily basis – the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Sharing Our Experience: Knowledgeable Attorneys

Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr's attorneys often provide consultation for other law firms that are handling Regulatory Takings cases. In addition, we are frequently invited to write articles and lecture on Regulatory Takings law issues. In addition, some of our attorneys lecture on environmental matters in a range of venues and some are members of the Philadelphia Bar Association's Environmental Law Committee and ABA Natural Resources Law Section. Our group includes a former Assistant Attorney General and Assistant Counsel to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources (now the Department of Environmental Protection) and former Chair of the Environmental, Mineral, and Natural Resources Law Section of the Pennsylvania Bar Association.



The group includes attorneys who have received the following recognition:

Trade Groups & Associations