Dare Co. Faces Lawsuit For Keeping Property Owners Out

Apr 8, 2020

Local government officials and staff from Dare County and its municipalities met in March at the Dare County Emergency Operations Center for a briefing from public health and emergency management officials regarding COVID-19
Credit Dare County / Twitter

A group of non-full-time-residents has filed a federal lawsuit against Dare County for prohibiting them from accessing their properties in the county.

Last month, Dare County declared a state of emergency and cut off entry to non-residents to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Six property owners from South Carolina, Virginia and Maryland sued. Chuck Kitchen, a lawyer for the group, argues that the declaration barring visitors is unconstitutional, and that these property owners are residents of Dare County.

"Just because they have more than one residence does not mean they are not a resident of Dare County," he said. "They pay taxes down there. They spend time down there. At least one of them says he spends at least half his time in Dare County."

Kitchen adds that since the matter became public, his law firm has received at least 50 requests from other owners of second homes and rental properties in Dare County who want to join the suit.