United States Supreme Court holds in Favor of Arkansas landowner, Arkansas Game & Fish, in Eminent Domain Case

December 5, 2012

On Tuesday, December 4, 2012 the United States Supreme Court unanimously held that government induced flooding of property was subject to the Takings Clause of the Constitution, even if the flooding was temporary in nature. The case revolved around a claim by the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission (“AGFC”) for compensation from the U.S. government as a result of damage sustained to Commission owned timber by U.S. Army Corp of Engineers flooding. AGFC argued it was entitled to compensation for the “taking” of their property under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, even though the flooding was only temporary. The federal government argued that since the floods were only temporary, they did not constitute a taking and therefore no compensation was owed to AGFC.

AGFC had previously prevailed on its claim for damages in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and was awarded $5.5 million compensation, plus an additional sum of approximately $175,000 to plant new trees. Subsequently, that decision was reversed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The United States Supreme Court agreed to review the case earlier this year and the landowners ultimately prevailed.

Arkansas eminent domain lawyers, Brandon Moffitt & Michael Phillips, joined an amicus brief filed by Owners’ Counsel of America earlier this year supporting the landowners.

 

You can read the eminent domain case by clicking the link below:


Arkansas Game & Fish Comm’n v. United States

 

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