Online "Regulatory takings" resource

By Joel R. Burcat

The United States Constitution protects private property owners from confiscation of their property by the government. The Fifth Amendment provides in part, "nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." When government condemns property, it is required to pay compensation in all cases.

When government regulation of private property "goes too far" and deprives the landowner of the value of his land through enactment of a statute, promulgation of a regulation, refusal to issue a permit, or declaration of land as a wetland, as endangered species habitat or as unsuitable for mining, such a taking also may be compensable. This is known as a regulatory taking or inverse condemnation.

[A web site is online to serve as a resource for] private property owners seeking information regarding regulatory takings. Links are provided to enable the user quickly to jump to articles, cases and organizational web sites... The site is:

For a comprehensive review of the law of regulatory taking ... review the article, The Law of Regulatory Takings, Part I: Development of the Law, written with Julia M. Glencer [— online at:

This article traces the law from its Constitutional roots, through early case law and is current through early 2002. The article discusses and summarizes the major cases on regulatory takings. More recent cases are summarized in the articles listed [on the website].

Joel R. Burcat, Esq., Saul Ewing LLP, 2 N 2nd Street, 7th Floor, Harrisburg, PA 17101, 717-257-7500, fax 717-257-7501, e-mail jburcat@saul.com