Lewis Rice Wins Nearly $500,000 in Compensation for Sarasota Landowners

Lewis Rice members Lindsay Brinton and Meghan Largent won nearly $500,000 in compensation for three landowners in Sarasota, Florida, who brought takings claims against the federal government in Cheshire Hunt v. United States. The claim resulted from the conversion of an abandoned rail line into the Legacy Trail, a public, 10.7-mile recreational hiking and biking trail, which crossed or trespassed on the landowners’ property.

The landowners, who all live along a 1.7-mile segment of the trail between Sawyer Loop Road and Ashton Road, sued the federal government in 2018 after it seized their property for the conversion of the rail line into the Legacy Trail in 2017. The land underlying the railroad easement belonged to them, and the conversion of the railroad into a public recreational trail was not authorized under Florida law.

With a focus on representing landowners across the country to pursue their Fifth Amendment Takings claims against the federal government, Lindsay and Meghan have helped landowners along the Legacy Trail recover more than $10 million in compensation. Although these are the first three landowners in the Sawyer Loop Road to Ashton Road segment of the Legacy Trail to be compensated, Lindsay and Meghan said there are numerous others in the area who are also eligible for compensation but have not yet filed a claim.

To learn more about why and how a claim can be made against the federal government, timing, how they will be represented in pursuing their takings claims, and how compensation will be determined, landowners can contact Lindsay Brinton at [email protected] or 314-444-7723.