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Dalton and Tomich white logo

Attorneys for

Religious Schools

Has your religious institution been blindsided by restrictive zoning and land use regulations? We can help.

Click your organization type above to learn more about how we can help you and to find FREE GUIDES and resources on what protections you have under RLUIPA.

What is RLUIPA?

In 2000, Congress passed a law called the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, or RLUIPA, in response to a growing problem of discrimination against religious institutions by local governments. RLUIPA was enacted to ensure religious institutions were treated as well as nonreligious institutions in the land use context. RLUIPA levels the playing field for faith communities by requiring local governments to treat religious institutions and assemblies equally.

RLUIPA Law Services

If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of having purchased a building or land for your faith community only to find it is not zoned for religious assembly, you’re not alone. At Dalton & Tomich, we fight for religious organizations just like yours so that you can freely use your property for religious purposes.

If your local government has denied you the ability to use your land for religious assembly due to zoning issues, this is not the end of the road. You may have more rights than you think.

We have successfully defended the rights of religious institutions across the country who were unable to use their property due to unlawful zoning restrictions and land use regulations. We fight for your ability to serve your congregation and your community.

The land use attorneys at Dalton & Tomich help all faith communities navigate land use disputes and protect their rights under RLUIPA.


What Every Religious Entity Needs to Know About Zoning: A 7-Step Checklist for Developing Land

Simple Process that Delivers Solutions

Our goal is not just to win cases but to remove the barriers that stand in the way of your ministry and religious mission. We want to take care of your land use issue in a way that allows you to focus on the good work you set out to do.

Land use and zoning matters can be very complex, but we try to simplify the process and accomplish your objectives.

1. Evaluate Goals

We want to understand your religious mission, vision, and values. We would like to know what your faith community needs and what legal issues are standing in its way.

2. Recommendations on the Best Way to Proceed

We will determine if you need to secure approval or denial from a local administrative body and make recommendations as to how to proceed within the local community’s administrative processes. These recommendations will be rooted in our experience successfully navigating local procedures and land use approval processes on behalf of churches and other religious entities across the nation.

There are many potential scenarios, and our team will help you consider all your options when crafting our approach.

3. Secure Expert Witnesses and Evidence

We can help you secure expert witnesses in planning, zoning, traffic, or any other necessary field to support your zoning application or lawsuit. In some cases, we may recommend retaining a public relations specialist.

4. Suit Preparation and Finalization

After we have all the facts and evidence ready to proceed with your land use or zoning case, we will file suit and seek immediate injunctive relief when possible.

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