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MaryAnn

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How do I find case law? I want to replace my worn front steps "in-kind" but the town says I need a variance. My house is 100 years old and the existing front steps were grandfathered into the now 20 foot setback zone. But the town tells me new steps will not be grandfathered and I need a variance.

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Why do you need cae law?  Have you applied for the variance?

 

Minor matters like zoning or construction variances of the type you are referring to are highly unlikely to ever reach an appellate court, where the bulk of case law is found. If you were to try to find case law on zoning issues you would quickly find it varies from state to state and county to county, neither of which were identified in you posting.

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You can read your building and zoning codes either online at the city or county websites or in person at their offices.

 

Property is generally "grandfathered" if you are not making changes or major renovations or repairs.

 

Go to your town's office and say "Show me the ordinance where it says I need a variance."

 

Can't imagine why you haven't done that.

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1 hour ago, MaryAnn said:

How do I find case law?

 

By visiting a law library or using an online research tool (e.g., Lexis or Westlaw).  There are free services (e.g., Google Scholar), and even ordinary internet searches may turn up relevant case law.

 

 

1 hour ago, MaryAnn said:

the town says I need a variance.

 

So...have you applied for a variance?  If so, what happened?  If not, why not?

 

 

Here's the question you asked in the other thread you started:

 

1 hour ago, MaryAnn said:

How do I find zoning law?

 

Zoning laws are local to each county/city/town.  Google "[name of your city] zoning laws," and you should be able to find what you're looking for.

 

 

24 minutes ago, adjusterjack said:

Go to your town's office and say "Show me the ordinance where it says I need a variance."

 

Can't imagine why you haven't done that.

 

A good idea in theory, but the person asked this question is likely to respond along the lines of:  "you're free to look it up yourself."  It's also not a question that's likely answerable with reference to a single ordinance.

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i haven't applied for a variance. I'm told by an attorney that it will cost between $3,000 - $5,000. The steps alone will only cost no more than $1,000. It seems way out of balance and unnecessary.

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6 hours ago, MaryAnn said:

i haven't applied for a variance. I'm told by an attorney that it will cost between $3,000 - $5,000. The steps alone will only cost no more than $1,000. It seems way out of balance and unnecessary.

 

Note that you can attach files to your post. Post a photo. I'd be curious to see what your front steps look like. I'm a retired property adjuster. I may have some suggestions for you.

 

And how many feet over the setback line are the steps?

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