state action – action by state or local government, or conduct sanctioned by state or local authorities, such as the enforcement of a restrictive covenant; such action may potentially violate a person’s rights


state action:

1. Anything done by a government, especially in constitutional law, an intrusion on a person’s rights (especially civil rights) either by a  government entity or by a private requirement that can be enforced only by governmental action (such as a racially restrictive covenant, which requires judicial action for enforcement). [1]

1. In constitutional law, action by state or local government, or conduct sanctioned by state or local authorities.  Such action may violate a person’s rights under the Fourteenth Amendment.  Enforcement of a restrictive covenant by a state court is an EXAMPLE of s state action.  See Shelley v. Kraimer. [2]

restrictive covenant:

1. A private agreement, usually in a deed or lease, that restricts the use of occupancy of real property, especially by specifying lot sizes, building lines, architectural styles, and the uses to which the property may be put.  *  Some restrictive covenants, such as race-based restrictions on transfers, are unenforceable but do not necessarily void the deed. — aka restrictive covenant in equity; equitable easement; equitable servitude

2. (1978) A promist, usually in a sale-of-business, partnership, or employment contract, not to engage int he same type of business for a stated time int he same market as the buyer, partner, or employer.  *   Noncompetition covenants are valid to protect business goodwill int he sale fo a company.   In employment contexts, requiring the employee, after leaving the employment, not to do a particular type fo work, they are disfavored as restraints of trade.  Courts generally enforce them for the duration of the relationship, but provisions that extend beyond that relationship must be reasonable in scope, time, and territory. — aka covenant not to compete; noncompetition agreement; noncompete covenant; noncompetition covenant; covenant in restraint of trade; promise not to compete; contract not to compete. [1]

1. A covenant restricting or regulating the use of real property or the kind, character, and location of buildings or other structures that may be erected thereon, usually created by a condition, covenant, reservation, or exception in a deed, but susceptible of creation by contract not involving transfer of title to land and by implication. 20 Am J2d cov §§ 165 et seq. [2]

1. A covenant in a deed prohibiting or restricting the use of the property (EXAMPLE: the type, location, or size of buildings that can be constructive on it).  A covenant prohibiting the sale of real property to persons of a particular race is unenforceable because it is unconstitutional restrain on alienation.  See Shelley v Kraemer.

2. A covenant not to sue. [3]


Disclaimer: All material throughout this website is compiled in accordance with Fair Use.

[1]: Black’s Law Dictionary Deluxe Tenth Edition by Henry Campbell Black, Editor in Chief Bryan A. Garner. ISBN: 978-0-314-61300-4

[2]:  Ballantine’s Law Dictionary Legal Assistant Edition
by Jack Ballantine 
(James Arthur 1871-1949).  Doctored by Jack G. Handler, J.D. © 1994 Delmar by Thomson Learning.  ISBN 0-8273-4874-6.


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