Arizona State Office

“For the first time, the most influential public-interest law firm in the state wasn't the liberal Center for Law in the Public Interest. It was a newcomer, the libertarian Institute for Justice, which has the state’s municipalities on the run regarding condemnation for private development.”
—Columnist Robert Robb
Arizona Republic



IJ-AZ client Randy Bailey
Parents Glenn and Rhonda Dennard with their children, (from left), Marche, Micah, Glenn II, Sarah and Joshua.

With the opening of its first state office in August 2001, the Institute for Justice proudly announced that Arizona’s new freedom cavalry had arrived.

IJ-AZ’s first lawsuit protected a family-owned brake shop from being taken by the city of Mesa for the purely private benefit of a developer who wanted the land for a hardware store.  Immediately, IJ-AZ earned the praise of the East Valley Tribune’s Bob Schuster, who wrote, “The [I]nstitute [for Justice] already has supplanted the American Civil Liberties Union . . . as the nation’s premier courtroom champion of individual freedom.”  IJ-AZ saved the brake shop, won a landmark legal precedent protecting Arizonans from eminent domain abuse, and set the stage for the passage of the Arizona Private Property Rights Protection Act.

In the realm of educational choice, IJ-AZ has opened educational opportunities for thousands of Arizona children.  Since 1997, IJ and IJ-AZ have been defending Arizona’s individual tax credit program, winning before the Arizona Supreme Court in 1999, and continuing the fight all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2010.

IJ-AZ is no stranger to the highest court in the land, and will also be arguing its challenge to Arizona’s punitive system of taxpayer-financed campaigns in the U.S. Supreme Court in 2011.

On top of all this, IJ-AZ’s efforts have protected people’s right to earn an honest living, free from arbitrary government regulations and made Arizona a freer place for entrepreneurs and consumers:

-Hairbraiders were compelled to get a license requiring at least $10,000 in tuition and 1,600 hours of classroom instruction, none of which was about braiding.  Now they can practice their trade without unnecessary credentialing and licensing.

-Small scale landscapers and gardeners were forced by a government agency to get a license—requiring 3,000 hours of training and hands-on experience over the preceding five years, a license that would require a landscaper or gardener to quit working for himself and work for his competition for nearly 18 months doing nothing but spraying weeds fulltime, 40 hours a week—before using an over-the-counter herbicide like Roundup®.  Now they can do in their business what we all could do on the weekends.

In addition to its legal victories, the Arizona office has had tremendous success in the court of public opinion.  The saga of San Tan Flat’s fight against the dance police received national print, radio and TV coverage and was featured on  And when established pest control companies tried to use the Arizona Structural Pest Control Commission to pick on a teenage entrepreneur and protect their own monopoly from competition, IJ-AZ fought back and dominated the media headlines for weeks.  Not only did the Commission buckle under the weight of public opinion, the State of Arizona abolished the Commission entirely.

In its nearly ten years of defending liberty, IJ-AZ has launched over 20 cases and has secured victories in all of IJ’s four litigation pillars: protection of private property, First Amendment rights, school choice and the right to earn an honest living.

IJ-AZ’s staff of talented attorneys, along with a network of volunteer lawyers and like-minded policy organizations continues to protect the legacy of liberty in the Grand Canyon State.


Directions to IJ-Arizona Office

The Institute for Justice Arizona office is located on the 3rd Floor of the Casa Loma building located on the Northwest corner of 4th St. & Mill Avenue in Tempe.

398 S Mill Ave
Tempe, AZ 85281

To determine a door-to-door route to IJ Arizona State office, visit Google Maps and enter your starting address.

Phone: (480) 557-8300
Fax: (480) 557-8305 


Law Student Clerkships:

To apply for semester clerkships in our Arizona office, please submit a cover letter, resume and writing sample via email to  If you are interested in applying for a summer clerkship please visit


Guest Speaker Information:

If you would like to invite an Institute for Justice attorney to a debate or to speak to your group. please email To see if there are any events near you, go to our Speakers & Events page.


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Tel 703.682.9320, Fax 703.682.9321
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