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Fort Lauderdale airport results in Broward County lawsuit

The owners of Dania Farms have just settled a legal battle with Broward County, to the tune of $42 million plus fees. The suit claimed that the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport resulted in frequent flooding of the farm's 38 acres.

The land has been owned by the Shaw family for more than 80 years. In 2012, Broward County began construction of the airport runway. The construction was completed and the runway put into use in 2014. That is when the frequent flooding began. The 38 acres of farmland is now zoned for development of hotels, but the flooding has prevented the land from being used for such.

In September of last year, a Circuit Court judge ruled in favor of the Shaw family. The settlement between the Shaw family and the county of Broward includes not only $42 million to be paid to the family, but in addition, the county will have to pay attorney and witness fees.

Some of this cost may end up falling on taxpayers. According to the Sun Sentinel, the settlement agrees that the land "could be used for future development" of the airport.

Zoning is very important in real estate deals, and engineers must be very conscientious in planning to ensure they don't damage or infringe upon surrounding property. Lawsuits or real estate disputes can arise when any type of construction or actions taken on a property reduces the value of property nearby belonging to others.

Depending on the details of the case, real estate litigation can be complex, tedious and lengthy. With a goal to conclude the litigation as quickly as possible, look for experience when selecting an attorney to represent you in your case.

Source: The Real Deal, "Broward County to pay $42M for farm land to settle lawsuit," March 20, 2018

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