United States v. Dickinson
331 U.S. 745 (1947)

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U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Dickinson, 331 U.S. 745 (1947)

United States v. Dickinson

No. 77

Argued December 13, 1946

Decided June 16, 1947*

331 U.S. 745

CERTIORARI TO THE CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS

FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT

1. Without condemning the land, the Government dammed a river and raised the water level by successive stages until it flooded part of respondents' land. More than 6 years after the dam began to impound water, but less than 6 years after the water reached its ultimate level, respondents sued for compensation under the Tucker Act, Judicial Code § 24(20), 28 U.S.C. § 41(20).

Held: their claims are not barred by the six-year limitation. Pp. 331 U. S. 747-750.

2. When the Government chooses not to condemn land, but to bring about a taking by a continuing process of physical events, the owner is not required to resort either to piecemeal or to premature litigation to ascertain the just compensation for what really is "taken." P. 331 U. S. 749.

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