Whittier Zoning Attorney

Find the right Zoning Planning & Land Use attorney in Whittier, CA

Zoning Planning & Land Use Law in California

The laws governing how land can and cannot be used in Whittier, California are fairly confusing, and can be confusing to laypersons. This should provide a basic overview.

Local governments will typically divide the city or town into sections, called "zones," each of which is designated for a particular use, such as residential homes, commercial businesses, agriculture, manufacturing, etc. This process is known as "zoning."

There are a lot of rationales and purposes for zoning laws. In general, they're based in common sense: chemical plants shouldn't be constructed next to daycare centers, pig farms should not be constructed in the middle of a residential neighborhood, and other simple principles similar to that. Zoning laws, by keeping conflicting land uses separate, make life easier for all parties, ensuring that property values will be preserved, and that necessary industries can be conducted where they will not bother anyone.

Zoning laws usually acknowledge the necessities of things like factories, sewage treatment plants, and stockyards, but recognize that such activities shouldn't be conducted in residential areas.

Possible Outcomes of Boundary and Title Disputes in Whittier, California

You have quite a few options if you find that a planned or current use of your property violates Whittier, California's zoning regulations.

First of all, and most simply, the owner could just fix the violation. If the violation isn't very substantial, and fixing it wouldn't cost very much, this is probably the best and easiest option.

What if, however, you've invested a substantial amount of time and money into making an improvement on your property, only to find that it violates your local zoning laws in some minor way? In this case, you can apply for a variance. This is typically an exception to the zoning rules. If declining to enforce these rules would not harm anyone, and would not do much to advance the purpose of Whittier, California's zoning laws, a variance will typically be granted.

You also have substantial protections if a zoning law changes, and you find that the land you've been living on for years is suddenly in violation of the new law. In general, zoning laws cannot apply to structures and uses which were built or commenced before the law was changed. Under the U.S. Constitution, it's not permissible for state or local governments to pass laws which have retroactive effect. You should know, however, that any future changes you make to your property will have to comply with the new zoning law.

What Can A Whittier, California Attorney Do?

If you are in the early stages of a major construction or remodeling project on your property, especially if it is in a residential area (where zoning laws tend to be most restrictive), you are likely to confront one zoning law issue or another. Of course, having read this article, you should now be aware that you have rights when it comes to contesting a zoning law as applied to you. While such contests do not always come out on the side of the landowner, the guidance of a knowledgeable Whittier, California real estate attorney will greatly improve one's chances.

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Life in Whittier

Whittier is located in Los Angeles County in the state of California. About 12 miles away from Los Angeles, Whittier is a favored commuter city with its bustling economic and residential scene. Whittier, California was named after John Greenleeaf Whittier, a famous poet. The city has over 85,000 residents and was first incorporated in 1898.

Whittier, California is an excellent city for recreation and leisure activities. The city maintains an extensive recreation department that offers youth sports, adult instructional courses, and senior activities. Shopping is excellent in places like the Whittwood Town Center, which is a mall featuring various national retail stores. In addition, the city of Whittier places much emphasis on the development of cultural arts in the city, with projects like the Whittier Cultural Arts Foundation, Art in Public Places, and the Community Arts Coalition.

With its rich history, Whittier, California is also known for its high concentration of historic landmarks, registered both nationally and with the state of California. In particular, the Pio Pico State Historic Park is a well-frequented site, as well as the Whittier Museum. Whittier College is also located in the city and is one of the major employers for the region.

Lawyers in Whittier, California serve the community by offering legal services in a diverse range of fields. Whittier lawyers typically file lawsuits at the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles. Experienced lawyers in Whittier can help address legal inquires and provide representation in court.

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