The Supreme Court has granted certiorari this term to re-consider the ripeness requirement for a claim for just compensation, first articulated in in Williamson County Regional Planning Commission v. Hamilton Bank, 473 U.S. 172 (1985). Knick v. Town of Scott, Pennsylvania, No. 17-647. Interestingly, the Court decided to go right to the jugular, deciding whether the ripeness rule should be abrogated entirely, instead of nibbling at the edges to decide whether the rule applied to physical/facial takings.
Like much of takings law, the ripeness rule is a mess. As with most takings jurisprudence, the analysis starts innocently enough, then breaks down as it’s applied. The logic behind the ripeness rule is that you can’t claim a violation of federal takings law through a civil rights claim seeking just compensation for a taking until you seek compensation from the state, which is allegedly taking the property. The claim isn’t ripe until you’ve asked