Sellers fight presale inspection law

Law of the Land

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Calumet City, Ill., passed a point-of-sale ordinance prohibiting a home from being sold until it has been inspected to determine whether it complies with city building codes. Several homeowners were prevented or delayed from selling their homes by the mandatory inspection.The group of homeowners filed suit against the city, arguing that the ordinance violated the due process clause of the 14th Amendment, which prohibits governmental agencies from "depriv(ing) a person of property without due process of law." All cases were dismissed at the trial court level on grounds that the homeowners had no claim. On appeal, the trial courts' dismissals of the homeowners' claims were affirmed. The Court of Appeals clarified that the 14th Amendment's due process requirements do not prohibit governmental regulation on what people can do with their property via building and zoning codes, by any means. The court cited numerous rulings upholding domestic pet restrictions on priv...