For most Americans, our homes are our one true safe haven and a source of pride and joy in our lives. That is why the idea of eminent domain is so difficult for many to swallow. The thought of the government displacing families for the sake of a new highway or sewer line is unfathomable to most. While the law of eminent domain requires that the purchasing entity offers fair market value for properties acquired under it, the offer doesn’t represent the time, effort and memories that go into making a house a home. Fortunately, for homeowners there is a way to fight back for proper compensation: an attorney.
The law of eminent domain gives the government the power to acquire private property for infrastructure projects by purchasing them from the owner. This arrangement may seem reasonable enough, but to many American’s their home is just not for sale. Unfortunately, when a government body wants to acquire a property through the law of eminent domain there are not many things that an individual can do to stop the process, but there are ways for homeowners to counter the offer.
Any time a government entity wishes to acquire a property they must give the landowner reasonable notice. This time should be used by landowners to consider the offer and get the help of an attorney if they are planning to challenge or counter it. If the landowner and government entity can’t reach an agreement on the purchase price, the landowner may challenge the acquisition through a condemnation action. During this process, both parties can make their case for either different compensation or a denial of the acquisition.
A court will make a ruling on the condemnation action either for or against the taking of the property. With the help of an attorney, homeowners may be able to seek proper compensation for their family’s home.