Eminent Domain

Mr. Markham has substantial experience litigating condemnation matters and cases brought under the eminent domain statutes. He is highly proficient in the law of takings and has litigated the issue of wrongful takings, including issues that have arisen under the Kelo doctrine, which surprisingly allows a government agency to condemn and take a property from one private owner and transfer it to another private owner on the ground that the new owner will make better use of the property! He also has extensive experience negotiating and litigating valuations issues, helping to ensure that his clients obtain fair value and “just compensation” for the properties that different government agencies take from them under threat of condemnation. Mr. Markham has obtained substantial settlements and condemnation awards for his clients, which have included the following substantial matters:

$4.4 Million Settlement in Complex Eminent Domain Litigation. In a complex eminent domain proceeding, Mr. Markham represented a large polypropylene factory located in Alameda County. The Oakland Unified School District condemned the property and made an initial offer of approximately $2.8 million. After a substantial litigation, the condemnor agreed to pay approximately $4.4 million for its taking. Case name: Oakland Unified School District v. Cheng (Alameda Cty. Sup. Ct., Case No. 2002-051449).

$3.1 Million Settlement in Cutting-Edge Eminent Domain Litigation. In a complex, novel eminent domain proceeding, Mr. Markham represented the owner of commercial property that a government agency chose to condemn and take so that it could transfer ownership to a private developer. This case was brought after the US Supreme Court ruled in the Kelo case that such takings were permissible upon a proper showing. The condemnor’s original offer was approximately $1.6 million, and the final stipulated award was worth approximately $3.1 million.