Land Grant In California Prior to California Constitution Not Subject to California Constitution

October 31st, 2013

This lawyer gets an A+ for creativity:

In the unusual ruling, San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Gerald Buchwald concluded Thursday that the property’s history as a mid-19th century land grant predates the creation of the state of California and preempts the California Constitution.

In granting summary judgment to the property owner after a three-day hearing, Buchwald noted that the rights to the land grant held by Jose Antonio Alviso were upheld by the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo and in 1859 by the U.S. Supreme Court – and thus preempt any public access doctrines laid out by the California Constitution.

Imagine that! A lawyer who made a property argument based on a 150 year old treaty. I’m pretty sure that wasn’t on the California Bar, nor was it in any black letter outline.