Fuentes v. Shevin Case Brief

Why is the case important?

Two cases involving similar issues of due process considerations were joined. Plaintiffs challenged the constitutionality of prejudgment replevin statutes on the grounds that the denial of notice and a hearing was a violation of their right to due process.

Facts of the case

Question

Do state replevin statutes that fail to provide property owners with notice and an opportunity to challenge the seizure of their property violate the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee that no state shall deprive any person of property without due process of law?

Answer

Yes. Judgment is vacated and remanded.
One cannot deprive an individual of his or her property without prior notice and the opportunity for a pre-deprivation hearing.

Conclusion

The Florida and Pennsylvania replevin provisions are invalid under the Fourteenth Amendment since they work a deprivation of property without due process of law by denying the right to a prior opportunity to be heard before chattels are taken from the possessor.

  • Case Brief: 1972
  • Appellant: Fuentes
  • Appellee: Shevin
  • Decided by: Burger Court

Citation: 407 US 67 (1972)
Argued: Nov 9, 1971
Decided: Jun 12, 1972