Thomas Mitchell Discusses Racial Disparity in Property Ownership

Thomas Mitchell delivered the 14th Annual Norman Williams Distinguished Lecture in Land Use Planning and the Law on April 12 at VLS. Mitchell, who serves as Interim Dean and Professor at Texas A&M University School of Law, discussed “How to Address Racial Disparity in Property Ownership.” He addressed how legislative reform of property laws that negatively impact disadvantaged property owners in disproportionate ways can be achieved, although there are often significant barriers that stymie such reform efforts for such property owners. He drew upon his experience serving as the reporter (principal drafter) for the Uniform Law Commission of the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act, a uniform act enacted into law in ten states thus far, as a case study of how such reform can be achieved working with elite legal actors and activists at the local and state level. Mitchell also co-directs the Program in Real Estate and Community Development Law at Texas A&M.