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City of Monterey v. Del Monte Dunes at Monterey, Ltd.

Citation. 526 U.S. 687, 119 S.Ct. 1624, 143 L.Ed.2d 882 (1999)
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Brief Fact Summary.

Plaintiff sued Defendant for a regulatory taking under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

Synopsis of Rule of Law.

A claim for regulatory taking, brought under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, may be decided by a jury pursuant to the Seventh Amendment.


The City of Monterey (Defendant) denied proposals by Del Monte Dunes (Plaintiff) to develop its property. Plaintiff brought suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for a regulatory taking without just compensation or post-deprivation remedy.


In a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim regarding a regulatory taking, do plaintiffs have a right to a jury trial?


Yes, the jury trial was proper. The Court of Appeals is affirmed.


Justice Souter

Justice Souter argued that the Plaintiff did not have a statutory or constitutional right to a jury trial because a regulatory taking claim under § 1983 is analogous to a condemnation proceeding, which had no right to a jury trial at the time of the enactment of the Seventh Amendment.

Justice Scalia

Justice Scalia stated that the central question for the Court to determine was whether or not a § 1983 claim is entitled to a jury. In this case he argued that the § 1983 claim was entitled to a jury because monetary damages are being sought.


The Court determined that the Plaintiff did not have a statutory right to a jury trial under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. But the Court determined the Plaintiff did have a constitutional right to a jury trial under the Seventh Amendment because the narrow issue of whether a landowner has suffered a regulatory taking is a predominantly factual question meant for the jury.

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