DDSF Partner John Mackel presented the Case of the Month in the International Right of Way Association’s September / October newsletter. John discussed William Bookout v. State of California ex rel. Dept. of Transportation (2010) 186 Cal.App.4th 1478. Specifially, John examined the court’s evaluation of just how long is the time limitation to bring an inverse condemnation claim.
In William Bookout, the plaintiff waited almost five years to file his lawsuit concerning repeated flooding caused by an inadequate drainage pipe that ruined his plant nursery business. The plaintiff contended taht the five year statute of limitations governing inverse condemnation actions applied. However, the trial court found, and the appellate court affirmed, that because plaintiff did not establish a taking by a public entity through possession and control of plaintiff’s property, the three year statute governing damage to property applied.