The Housing Strategy and Litigation Group is a specialized team of attorneys with a deep understanding of California's complex housing development laws, and extensive experience advancing housing development projects through strategic litigation under the Housing Accountability Act (HAA), Housing Crisis Act (SB330), Density Bonus Law, Permit Streamlining Act, and other recent housing legislation.
The group offers a range of legal services to help developers, home builders, and property owners navigate local entitlements, regulatory challenges, appeals, and litigation, and to maximize the advantages and protections afforded by critical California housing laws.
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Key highlights of the Housing Strategy and Litigation Group:
- Interdisciplinary Expertise: The group includes attorneys with diverse legal backgrounds, enabling them to provide a comprehensive approach to housing-related legal matters. Our professionals are well-versed in real estate law, land use, zoning, land-use litigation, and other relevant areas.
- California Focus: The group's primary focus is on California housing laws and regulations, recognizing the unique challenges and opportunities within the state. Their expertise is tailored to the specific nuances of California's housing landscape.
- California Housing Accountability Act and SB330: The group specializes in helping clients understand the advantages afforded by California Housing Accountability Act and SB330—laws that aim to streamline housing development and limit local discretion over housing projects.
- Litigation Support: In cases where housing-related legal disputes arise, the Housing Strategy and Litigation Group offers robust litigation support, representing clients' interests in court.
- Comprehensive Legal Solutions: Whether it's advising on compliance, guiding through permitting processes, or representing clients in legal battles, the group aims to offer holistic solutions to meet the diverse needs of developers, property owners, and stakeholders in the California housing market.
JMBM Recent Representation and Successes
Yes In My Back Yard, Sonja Trauss, and Janet Jha v. City of Los Angeles - The Los Angeles Superior Court’s decision in the case provides important guidance to developers and local agencies on how to process housing development projects located on sites where the density permitted by the General Plan (or applicable specific or community plans) is greater than the density allowed under the zoning code. The court held that the developers are entitled to the highest available density, even when the zoning density is less than the density allowed by the General Plan or other plans.
District Square, LLC v. City of Los Angeles – After the City of Los Angeles’ South Los Angeles Area Planning Commission arbitrarily denied a 577-unit housing development project, JMBM filed suit on behalf of the developer. The Court ruled in favor of our client, finding that the Commission had abused its discretion and acted in bad faith. The Court ordered the City to approve project, an order the City complied with.
JM Squared LLC and Yes In My Backyard v. City of Simi Valley – The City of Simi Valley’s City Council voted to deny a proposed 108-unit residential care facility with 68 assisted living units and 40 memory care units. The City Council contended that the Housing Accountability Act did not apply to senior assisted living facilities and denied the client’s application for a conditional use permit. JMBM successfully convinced the court that alternate housing arrangements such as senior assisted living facilities constitute housing under the HAA. The City was ultimately forced to approve the project.
ABY Holdings, LLC v. City of Los Angeles – JMBM prevailed against the City of Los Angeles again in a case involving the City’s refusal to approve a housing project given its recent adoption of a zoning ordinance designed to undermine the project in violation of SB330. As a result of the court’s ruling, the City was required to process the project under the prior zoning ordinance and was compelled by the HAA to approve the project.
2700 Sloat Holding LLC v. City of San Francisco – JMBM is currently representing the developer of a proposed 400+ unit density bonus development project in the City of San Francisco, which the City refuses to process based on its arbitrary interpretation of state density bonus law.