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The government wants to take all or part of my property. What should I do?

On Behalf of | May 26, 2021 | Eminent Domain |

Each time you drive along a new road, enter a new building or fly from a new airport, the chances are someone once lived there. When new authorities enter and promise to improve infrastructure in the region, it is likely that they will need to displace people to do so.


While communities and pressure groups have stopped developments in the past, the government usually gets its way. When it considers something is in the greater good, it is willing to let a few people suffer in the name of progress.


What is eminent domain law?


The law of eminent domain means federal, state and local authorities have the right to take private property for public use. To do so, they need to give the property owner fair compensation. To assess the value of your real estate, the government should send out someone qualified to make an appraisal based on various factors.


What you define as fair compensation may not be the same as the government’s valuation. They are responsible to the public, and people will complain if they freely hand out excessive compensation, so their initial offer may be lower than you hope for. Unless you are the only property owner affected, you may find strength in numbers. Consider getting together with the neighbors to fight for a better price.


If you fear your property is at risk from government plans, you will need legal help to understand the process and your options better. While you might not be able to prevent them from dispossessing you, it is crucial to ensure you get adequate compensation. Avoid signing any agreement before you are in full possession of the facts.