Town of Chester v. Laroe Estates, Inc.

PETITIONER:Town of Chester, New York
RESPONDENT:Laroe Estates, Inc.
LOCATION: Chester, New York

DOCKET NO.: 16-605
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

GRANTED: Jan 13, 2017

Facts of the case

Land developer Steve Sherman sued the Town of Chester (Chester) and alleged a regulatory taking of his property because Chester prevented him from developing his land by requiring unfair and repetitive procedures. While that case was pending, a real estate company, Laroe Estates, Inc. (Laroe), sought to intervene in the case and claimed that it currently owned the property in question based on an initial 2003 agreement and a subsequent one in 2013. In 2013, TD Bank, which held a superior mortgage on the property, initiated foreclosure proceedings, and Laroe and Sherman entered into a new sales agreement that took the foreclosure proceedings into account, but TD Bank took possession of the property. The district court denied Laroe’s motion to intervene because Laroe was not the owner of an interest in the property at the time of the alleged taking and therefore  lacked independent standing in the takings claim. The U.S. court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that, under Article III of the U.S. Constitution, Laroe was not required to show it independently had standing to intervene. The appellate court reasoned that the Second Circuit case United States Postal Service v. Brennan, which held that there is no need to impose a standing requirement on an intervenor if there is an established valid case or controversy, applied in this case.


According to Article III of the U.S. Constitution, must intervenors to a lawsuit establish standing on their own, or may they join so long as there is a valid case or controversy between the named parties?