Religious Land Use and Zoning Leaders

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Religious Land Use and Zoning Blogs

Churches and other religious institutions are protected from discrimination by municipalities and other local government bodies by the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, better known as RLUIPA. This blog by the national leaders in religious land use and zoning law highlights RLUIPA case studies and includes commentary on related news for church leaders and others throughout the country, as well as explanations of components of the RLUIPA law.

HOPE LUTHERAN SECURES COURT ORDER AND OVER $60,000 IN SETTLEMENT WITH ST. IGNACE, MI

  • September 30, 2019
  • by Noel Sterett
  • Category: RLUIPA

On Friday, September 27, the United States District Court of the Western District of Michigan entered a Consent Decree securing Hope Lutheran Church’s right to continue meeting at 132 S. State St. in St. Ignace, Michigan. In addition to the consent decree, the City agreed […]

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Defining “religious exercise” under RLUIPA in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals

  Today we had the opportunity to argue the parameters of RLUIPA before the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, Missouri in the case of St. John Vianney High School v. City of Kirkwood, Missouri.  In this case, the City of Kirkwood approved the renovation […]

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Happy RLUIPA Day!

On this day 19 years ago, President Bill Clinton signed into law the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, also known as RLUIPA. The law was passed by a unanimous Congress to enforce, by statutory right, four different constitutional prohibitions related to the development […]

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Who Decides What Activities Are Religious or Central to a Religious Institution’s Mission?

When a government regulation restricts an institution’s religious exercise, the government will often argue that the restricted activity is either not religious or not central to the institution’s religious mission. This issue surfaces in a variety of different cases. It often comes up in Title […]

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Appeals court orders Litchfield borough to pay Chabad Lubavitch’s legal fees

As reported in the Torrington Register Citizen on August 19, 2019, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the fee award for Dalton & Tomich PLC and the other attorneys who represented the Chabad in Litchfield, Connecticut in the decade long litigation over approving the […]

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Church Secures Right to Worship and $225,000 in Settlement with the City of Markham, IL

For more than six years, the City of Markham fought our client, the Church of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, in both state and federal court over the church’s right to continue meeting in its sanctuary at 16018 S. Spaulding Avenue. We asserted the […]

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Talking about RLUIPA to the Arizona Bar Association: Why do we need RLUIPA when we have the Free Exercise and Establishment Clauses in the First Amendment?

I had the opportunity to talk with attorneys in Arizona about Religious Land Use and Zoning at the annual meeting of the Arizona Bar Association and was asked to address the question of why do we need RLUIPA when we have the Free Exercise and […]

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Supreme Court Issues Major Property Rights Decision That Helps RLUIPA Plaintiffs

This morning the Supreme Court issued a major property/civil rights decision in Knick v. Township of Scott.  In a 5-4 decision, the Court overruled its 1985 decision in Williamson County v. Hamilton Bank. The Williamson County decision adopted a rule which required property owners to […]

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SUPREME COURT SENDS RELIGIOUS EXERCISE CASE BACK TO OREGON FOR RECONSIDERATION

In our April 15, 2019 blog post, we discussed a petition for review that was pending before the United States Supreme Court. The petition was filed in the case of Klein v. Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, and it involved two bakers who claimed […]

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The degree of a “Prevailing Party” for Attorney Fees in a RLUIPA action argued in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals

  • June 10, 2019
  • by Daniel P. Dalton
  • Category: RLUIPA

Today we argued in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City  the issue of how much success must a party have to be a “prevailing party,” to secure attorney fees recoverable under RLUIPA. The United States District Court held below that under […]

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Dalton & Tomich, PLC is the national leader in successfully helping churches, other religious institutions and their insurers defend their rights in land use and zoning matters under RLUIPA, the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act. We have helped clients win cases against municipalities and other local government bodies from coast to coast, with experience serving both as general counsel and special litigation counsel.