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Linmark Associates, Inc. v. Township of Willingboro

United States Supreme Court
431 U.S. 85 (1977)


Facts

The Council of the Township of Willingboro (CTW) (defendant) became concerned that Caucasian residents would move out of its borders due to an increase in its minority resident population. In response to this concern, the CTW enacted an ordinance that prohibited the posting of “For Sale” or “Sold” signs on any residential properties within the municipality. The CTW believed that this would minimize Caucasian homeowners’ belief that other Caucasians were selling their homes and leaving the municipality. Linmark Associates, Inc. (plaintiff) owned property when the ordinance was passed and brought suit in federal district court seeking to enjoin its enforcement. The district court held that the ordinance was unconstitutional, but the court of appeals reversed. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Marshall, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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