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Eminent domain is a law giving the government or state the power to seize private property without the owner's consent, provided there is some compensation given to the owner. A government or state can only seize private property for public use or benefit such as building public facilities, roadways or railroads (also known as condemnation).
According to the US Constitution, the Fifth Amendment prohibits any government or agency to confiscate any private property without providing compensation to the owner. Unfortunately, however, the amount of compensation is determined by the government and can result in an insufficient amount.
The processes of eminent domain are complicated and often unclear. Home owners and business owners can lose their property to government agencies that intend not to turn the property into a place of public use, but rather to increase their tax revenues and never even open the property to the public (falling under the "public benefit" category).
Owners may be offered a far less-than-appropriate offer for their property, be forced to close their business, move in a short amount of time, lose income, and face difficult trials. Without an eminent domain attorney, a property or business owner might not succeed in negotiating offers, fighting the proceeding, or recovering losses.
Initial offers of compensation for exercising the power of eminent domain can be relatively low. Similarly, the procedure can be very long and usually includes a court trial. An experienced eminent domain attorney can help you negotiate your compensation offer and/or challenge the proceedings all together.
A lawyer can represent you in court and may be able to get the condemnation proceedings dropped, or at least delayed. Government agencies have the right to correct any mistakes that would lead to a dropped case and/or can reopen the eminent domain case again in the future. A real estate lawyer can assist with this process and provide you with the best chance of challenging a potential seizure of your property.
Similarly, an experienced attorney will be able to negotiate your compensation offer properly, possibly resulting in a much higher compensation package that will best suite your needs.
If your private property is under eminent domain by the government and you need a real property lawyer, contact Attorney Search Network. We can help you find a real property lawyer in your area that handles eminent domain cases.
If you have any questions about the information provided above, please contact us. Call us toll free at (800) 215-1190 or fill out our online form for your Real Property lawyer referral.