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Can The Government Take My Property?

It’s a rare occurrence, but occasionally the government can come in and take your property from you. This action is called Eminent Domain, and it’s the power of the government to take private property for public use. State laws regulate how and when the government takes private property, and the government usually has to negotiate with the land owner before taking the property. The government is required to compensate the owner for the property they are taking.

Eminent Domain Process

Luckily the government can’t just take your property without notice. There are things that need to be done before they can condemn private property.

  • The landowner will usually receive a notice informing them of the government’s interest in their land telling them their intended plan for the property.
  • Your property may then be appraised to determine how much it is worth in the current market.
  • The government will then make you an offer.
  • If you accept the offer the government will usually have you sign legal releases transferring the ownership over to them.
  • If you do not accept the offer the matter could be taken to court in an eminent domain proceeding where it will be decided whether your land can be taken and how much you will get for it.

It’s important to know your rights and options when faced with an eminent domain case. Hiring an eminent domain attorney is a great way to ensure you fully understand your case and you’re being treated fairly.