Pennell v. City of San Jose
United States Supreme Court
485 U.S. 1 (1988)
The City of San Jose (defendant) enacted a rent control ordinance which permits a landlord to increase a tenant’s rent by eight percent. If a landlord wishes to raise the rent by more than eight percent, and the tenant objects, a hearing is required. During this hearing, a Mediation Hearing Officer is permitted to take into account several factors, including the hardship to a tenant. Richard Pennell (plaintiff), a San Jose landlord, objected to the terms of the ordinance allowing consideration of hardship to a tenant, resulting from a rent increase. He brought suit alleging that the ordinance violates the Fourteenth Amendment’s provisions against taking of private property for public use without just compensation. Pennell argued that the hearing officer’s ability to reduce the rent because of hardship to a tenant is a taking, and is impermissible because it does not serve the purpose of eliminating high rents. The Supreme Court of California ruled that the ordinance was constitutional. Pennell then petitioned for certiorari to the United States Supreme Court.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Rehnquist, C.J.)
Concurrence/Dissent (Scalia, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 175,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.