Press Releases

  • March 29, 2017    |   Private Property

    Today, the U.S. Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General released a report critiquing the department’s cash seizure and forfeiture activities. Among the report’s findings are that the DOJ “cannot effectively assess whether asset forfeiture is being appropriately used” and that “many of the DEA’s interdiction seizures may not advance or relate to criminal…

  • March 28, 2017    |   Economic Liberty

    A bill providing new oversight for Mississippi’s sprawling licensing boards is heading to the governor’s desk, after the Mississippi State Legislature adopted the conference report for the Occupational Board Compliance Act earlier today. Occupational licensing is now one of the biggest labor problems facing the state, with 23 percent of Mississippians needing a license to…

  • March 28, 2017    |   Economic Liberty

    Lawsuit Challenges Minnesota Ban on Using Out-of-State Grapes to Make Wine

    Institute for Justice Partners with Minnesota Farm Wineries to Protect Interstate Commerce

    If you want to buy your favorite wine at a farm winery in Minnesota, chances are you’ll be out of luck. A little-known but onerous state law bans farm wineries from legally making wine unless a majority of the winery’s grapes are grown in Minnesota—a restriction that protects the state’s grape industry from economic competition.…

  • March 23, 2017    |   Private Property

    Charlestown Fails Its Tenants

    After Months of Making Empty Promises of Help, Charlestown Stands By As Private Developer Evicts Tenants from Pleasant Ridge Rentals

    Arlington, Va.—Last year, the city of Charlestown launched a blitzkrieg of rental property inspections and levied crippling fines against landlords in the Pleasant Ridge development. Faced with escalating fines imposed under the city’s illegal code enforcement practices, the city made an offer that many landlords could not afford to refuse. If the landlords agreed to…

  • March 21, 2017    |   Private Property

    NYC Leaves Tenants Behind

    As NYC Reforms No-Fault Eviction Law, Thousands Get No Relief. IJ Will Continue To Fight For Their Rights.

    Arlington, Va.—Over the weekend, Mayor Bill de Blasio allowed the Nuisance Abatement Fairness Act to pass into law. The Act overhauls a city ordinance that is the target of a class action lawsuit filed by the Institute for Justice. Robert Everett Johnson, an attorney at the Institute for Justice, which represents the plaintiffs, issued the…

  • March 20, 2017    |   First Amendment

    Victory for Ocheesee Creamery in Federal Court of Appeals

    Court Ruled That Florida Cannot Ban Business From Truthfully Labeling Its Skim Milk

    Arlington, Va.—Late today, in a major victory for free speech, a three-judge panel from the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously ruled that it is unconstitutional for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) to ban Ocheesee Creamery from honestly labeling its all-natural skim milk as “skim milk.” Today’s ruling means that…

  • March 16, 2017    |   Private Property

    Today, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), and Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI) announced the Fifth Amendment Integrity Restoration Act of 2017 (S. 642 and H.R. 1555) a comprehensive reform bill designed to protect innocent property owners from federal civil forfeiture. Civil forfeiture has sparked a firestorm of controversy in recent years, earning criticism from figures and organizations…

  • March 15, 2017    |   Private Property

    Outrage: Despite Giving Up Forfeiture, San Diego DA Refuses to Relinquish Illegally Seized Funds

    After Missing Key Deadline, San Diego District Attorney Invents New Theory for Why It Seized Family’s Money More Than a Year Ago

    San Diego—Yesterday evening, after missing a key deadline to file a civil forfeiture case against the Slatic family, the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office announced a brand new theory for why it seized the family’s life savings more than a year ago. In a court filing, the DA for the first time alleged that…

  • March 13, 2017    |   Private Property

    Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed a bill earlier today that will add new transparency requirements to civil forfeiture, which allows law enforcement to confiscate property without filing criminal charges. “Today’s signature is a welcome first step to shining a light on civil forfeiture in Mississippi,” said Institute for Justice Legislative Counsel Lee McGrath. “HB 812…

  • March 13, 2017    |   Private Property

    Pottstown, Penn.—Imagine the government rummaging through every inch of your home without your consent and without proof there is anything wrong with the property. That is exactly what is happening to Dottie and Omar Rivera, two Pennsylvania renters who are teaming up with the Institute for Justice to challenge the borough of Pottstown’s rental inspection…

  • March 9, 2017    |   Private Property

    New Hampshire House Approves Bill to Close Federal Forfeiture Loophole

    Bill Would Ensure Compliance with New Conviction Requirement

    Today, the New Hampshire House of Representatives passed HB 614, which would close a loophole in forfeiture law. Sponsored by Rep. Michael Sylvia, the bill would ban transferring or referring seized property to a federal agency or joint task force through the “equitable sharing” program, unless the property is cash over $100,000. The bill would…

  • March 8, 2017    |   Economic Liberty

    Today, the New Hampshire House of Representatives approved a bill to deregulate the practice of natural or African-style hair braiding. Under New Hampshire law, braiders can only work if they first obtain a cosmetology license, which takes at least 1,500 hours of training. Only six states have stricter requirements. But if enacted, HB 82 will…

  • March 2, 2017    |   Private Property

    The Mississippi Senate approved a bill earlier today that would add new transparency requirements to civil forfeiture, which allows law enforcement to confiscate property without filing criminal charges. “Today’s vote is a welcome first step to shining a light on civil forfeiture in Mississippi,” said Institute for Justice Legislative Counsel Lee McGrath. “HB 812 is intended…

  • March 1, 2017    |   Private Property

    The Indiana Senate overwhelmingly passed SB 8 yesterday, an important overhaul of the state’s civil forfeiture laws. Currently, Hoosiers do not have to be convicted of a crime, much less charged with one, for the government to take their property through civil forfeiture. Under the bill, the government would first need to secure a criminal…

  • February 28, 2017    |   Private Property

    Downtown Emerson Unites to Fight Eminent Domain

    Joined by National Advocacy Organization, Institute for Justice

    Emerson, NJ—Small-business owners and residents in Emerson are announcing the formation of a new organization, Stop Emerson Eminent Domain (SEED), dedicated to stopping the use of eminent domain in the downtown area (the “Central Business District,” or CBD). Earlier this month, property owners met with the Institute for Justice (IJ), a national public interest, civil…

  • February 27, 2017    |   Economic Liberty

    Victory Is Now Final for Ken’s Cab

    City of Little Rock Can No Longer Ban New Companies from Competing

    Little Rock, Ark.—Today, Arkansas taxi driver Ken Leininger won the final battle of his nearly one-year legal fight to expand his taxi company into Little Rock when the city decided not to appeal Ken’s December 2016 circuit-court victory. This means that Circuit Judge David Laser’s January 25, 2017 order declaring Little Rock’s taxi regulations unconstitutional…

  • February 24, 2017    |   Private Property

    PHILADELPHIA— Late yesterday afternoon, the fight to end Philadelphia’s civil forfeiture machine scored another major victory when a federal judge certified a class of property owners challenging the controversial practice of “policing for profit.” Under this practice, Philadelphia police and prosecutors take in millions of dollars each year in forfeiture proceeds, which they use to…

  • February 15, 2017    |   Private Property

    Yesterday, the City of Charlestown, Ind., filed a legal motion attempting to prevent the Institute for Justice from representing the residents of the Pleasant Ridge neighborhood for free. The motion, which is exceptionally rare, asks the court to allow the city’s attorney to cross-examine the Institute’s attorneys to determine if they are truly qualified to…

  • February 15, 2017    |   Economic Liberty

    Rhode Island Rep. Anastasia Williams, chair of the Legislative Black and Latino Caucus, recently introduced HB 5436, which would deregulate the practice of natural or African-style hair braiding. Under Rhode Island law, braiders can only work if they first obtain a cosmetology license, which takes at least 1,500 hours of training. Only six states have…

  • February 10, 2017    |   Private Property

    Lawsuit Challenges Mayor’s Mission to Bulldoze Low-income Neighborhood for Private Development

    Institute for Justice Partners with Charlestown, Ind. Homeowners to Fight City’s Illegal Land Grab

    Charlestown, Ind.—Imagine being told that the home you’ve lived in for most of your life—a home you own free and clear, a home you’ve raised your family in—was going to be bulldozed by the city to make room for a new housing development. That nightmare is an unfortunate reality for dozens of homeowners in the…


Media Team

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