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A card game company has reportedly bought acres of land on the Us/Mexico border, and also hired eminent domain lawyers to defend it. Could this actually prevent the construction of something (i.e a wall) from being built, or perhaps delay the process?

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    As I understand it, the land is actually in the US (though adjacent to the border). This is important to clarify. – Nate Eldredge Nov 15 '17 at 2:48
  • @Nate Eldredge They said it's on the border, so that should indicate that the land is on both sides. Otherwise it's not really on the border. Perhaps beside the border? – shaunxer Nov 15 '17 at 3:12
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    I think that's just a figure of speech. I don't think it would be legally possible for a single parcel of land to straddle the border. You could buy one piece of land on either side, but buying the piece on the Mexico side would be pointless for this plan. – Nate Eldredge Nov 15 '17 at 3:29
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    @NateEldredge beta.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/… – user662852 Nov 15 '17 at 4:09
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    Actually it turns out CAH would have had to purchase property only on the US side only. There's a frontier zone that spans some 60 miles from the border which is is off limits to US citizens for purchase. – shaunxer Nov 15 '17 at 6:40
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Could this actually prevent the construction of something (i.e a wall) from being built, or perhaps delay the process?

It could not prevent the construction of a wall from being built.

It could slightly delay the process, but government eminent domain lawyers are very efficient and the immediate possession phase of eminent domain cases is very fast, so the delay would be on the order of a few weeks to a few months, not a long delay. Also, good project managers figure in the time necessary to handle the eminent domain process into their project timing by working on land the government already owns first.

The determination of the amount of compensation to which the owner is entitled would take longer than that, but would happen after construction was commenced.

  • As a footnote, it occurs to me that delay may not be the true motive of the buyer as the buyer claims. Another reason would be to gain standing to challenge the law or the regulations implement the law related to the border wall on Administrative Procedure Act or constitutional grounds, once an eminent domain proceeding is brought. This probably wouldn't delay the project at all, but could conceivably provide a vehicle to strike down the relevant law in its entirety if it is indeed legally flawed (which is probably unlikely to be the case). – ohwilleke Nov 16 '17 at 1:07

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