On this episode, Maxwell Goss speaks with Daniel Dalton, the nation’s foremost litigator representing churches and religious bodies in land use and real property disputes. Dan is the author of several books including Religious Property Disputes and the Law, published by the American Bar Association. Dan discusses a pair of important cases involving religious land use and the free exercise clause. Dan also provides insights for handling lawsuits against government entities.
“Government entities always have the upper hand . . .
They have the ability, through statute and through judicial creation,
to do things that anywhere else in the world would be illegal.”
-Daniel P. Dalton
00:19 – Introduction
01:43 – Daniel Dalton's law practice
03:48 – Daniel's latest book, Religious Property Disputes and the Law
05:26 – Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Person Act (RLUIPA)
07:32 – Religious congregations separating from their denominations
09:34 – The Our Lady of Peace case
16:32 – The West Valley Christian Center case
22:14 – Litigating against a government agency vs. litigating against a corporation
25:43 – Dan's advice for lawyers suing a government entity
27:18 – Where to find Daniel online
Daniel P. Dalton is the nation’s preeminent authority in the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Person Act, also known as RLUIPA. He is one of the country’s most experienced attorneys in representing churches and other religious institutions in land use and zoning cases. Dan is the author of books including Religious Property Disputes and the Law and Litigating Religious Land Use Cases, published by the American Bar Association.
Dan’s firm, Dalton & Tomich, PLC, is the national leader in successfully helping churches, other religious institutions and their insurers defend their rights in land use and zoning matters under RLUIPA, the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act. The firm has helped clients win cases against municipalities and other local government bodies from coast to coast, with experience serving both as general counsel and special litigation counsel.