Eminent Domain: Representing Land Owners
Eminent domain has long been one of the most controversial rights granted to state and federal governments. It seems to run contrary to the deeply held American value (especially in Texas) that private property should be recognized and respected. Nonetheless, the government is allowed to appropriate private property for public use as long as the original owner is given “just compensation.”
This is not to say that landowners must simply accept whatever they are told. If you have received notice from the government that your land is being appropriated, you do have legal rights. With the help of an experienced lawyer, you can either contest the eminent domain assertion or seek higher compensation than what is being offered.
Land Owner Representation In Contested Eminent Domain Cases
Douglas A. Booth, offers highly skilled representation in real estate matters, including eminent domain. If you believe that the claim against your property is unreasonable or unjust, we can vigorously represent your interests in court.
Common arguments against the seizure of land include:
- Alleging that the entity seeking to appropriate your land lacks eminent domain authority
- Alleging that the land’s intended use is not for the public good
- Alleging that taking the land is not a public necessity
- Alleging that the entity appropriating the land has not followed required legal protocol
It is often difficult to stop an eminent domain action entirely. But at the very least, you can contest the action. If that effort fails, we can also help you seek better compensation.
Negotiating A Higher Price
It will likely come as no surprise that government officials can be unscrupulous in their negotiations for your property. You may initially receive a compensation offer that is well below market value for your land. And because you can’t walk away from the deal, it is usually in the government’s best interests to offer as little compensation as possible.
The good news is that things can change quickly when you hire an attorney. We will work with appraisers and other professionals to calculate the real market value of the property as well as the economic value of your stake in the land. Then, we can aggressively represent you in negotiations on more even footing, taking the case to trial if necessary.