After the Oconee County, South Carolina, courthouse opened seven years ago, federal officials found the $8 million building contained 93 violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act. For instance, the centers of the toilets are 19 inches from the wall, not 18 inches as required. And the mirrors in the restrooms are 41 inches from the floor, not 40. It will cost just over $2 million to bring the courthouse up to standard. The county sued its architect and builder, and they will pay a little more than $1 million for the work, leaving taxpayers on the hook for the rest.
"You have a situation where a person owed $8 and lost their house. I mean, how is that equitable?" asked Michigan Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein.
A Michigan Man Underpaid His Property Taxes By $8.41. The County Seized His Property, Sold It—and Kept the Profits.
A state law allows counties to effectively steal homes over unpaid taxes and keep the excess revenue for their own budgets.
The Eighth Amendment prohibition against excessive fines and fees applies to states as well, SCOTUS rules, opening a new way to challenge outlandish forfeitures.
Do you feel safer now?