YOUR EMINENT DOMAIN ATTORNEYS
IT IS OUR PLEDGE THAT WE WILL PROVIDE A FREE CASE REVIEW FOR ANY INDIVIDUAL OR BUSINESS FACING EMINENT DOMAIN OR CONDEMNATION.
IT IS STILL OUR PLEDGE THAT WE WILL PROVIDE A FREE CASE REVIEW FOR ANY INDIVIDUAL OR BUSINESS FACING EMINENT DOMAIN OR CONDEMNATION.
HIRING AN ATTORNEY? WATCH OUR VIDEO

INDIANA EMINENT DOMAIN ATTORNEYS

welcome-to-indiana-med

Eminent Domain & Condemnation Attorneys in Indiana

At Sever Storey, our mission is to hold condemners, whether they be state, federal, local, or utility, accountable to the landowners whose land they are acquiring. Our entire firm is built around serving you, the landowner who is facing eminent domain or condemnation.

While it’s understandable to feel overwhelmed in this situation, remember that our eminent domain attorneys in Indiana are here to answer all of your questions and fight for your rights.

 

What is Eminent Domain Law in Indiana?

Eminent domain in Indiana is a legal term referring to the government’s right to seize private land and take it away for public use. Though this right is conventionally reserved for the building of highways, government buildings, and other publicly owned and operated projects, this right, in some instances, extends to the builders of pipelines, powerlines, and redevelopment projects.

 

What Should Landowners Do After Receiving An Eminent Domain Notice in Indiana?

If you’ve received notice of eminent domain in Indiana, you may be unsure of where to turn next. Since the government may have been planning these actions for years prior, it’s essential to take swift action. Confusing, difficult, nerve racking are just some of the ways our clients have described the eminent domain process.

But even with that said, the innate sense in all of us is that "I can handle this. This is my property. I can competently defend it by myself." This type of attitude, while admirable and seemingly obvious, can get landowners into trouble. Eminent domain is an extremely niche area of law. Most attorneys have no idea how to handle it and what to do; there is no reason for you to be expected to be able to handle it yourself.

Even the landowner that doubles his offer on his own, or negotiates what he or she sees as a sweet deal, may be missing out on tens, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars in available money.

The experience Indiana eminent domain attorneys at Sever Storey understand how to provide maximum compensation and protect landowner rights.

So the question is: When should you hire/contact an Indiana eminent domain attorney?

 

1. Find an Experienced Eminent Domain Attorney

You don’t have to (and shouldn’t) fight the government on your own. Eminent domain attorneys are trained specifically to handle these types of cases, and they can help you get the best possible outcome in any situation.

2. Know Your Rights

Your attorney can help educate you on your rights when faced with eminent domain. This will put you in a better position to negotiate with the government and receive just compensation for your land.

3. Allow Your Lawyer to Conduct Negotiations

It’s your lawyer’s job to handle all negotiations and litigation associated with your case. A skilled lawyer will be able to stand up for your rights and make sure you get fair treatment in court.

4. Resolve the Matter

Eminent domain cases can resolve at any point between receiving an offer and receiving a jury verdict on compensation. Generally, the more complex the case is, the longer it takes to conclude. A landowner should rely on an experienced attorney’s advice when considering when to take or reject a government’s offer of settlement.

 

What Are the Limits of Eminent Domain in Indiana?

Do not lose hope in your battle with the government. There are limits and institutional guidelines implemented in Indiana’s code which restrict a condemnor’s actions and/or protect the landowner. Knowing those nuances is key to getting fair treatment. The government is required to:

- Provide notice of condemnation
- Show justified reasons for taking the land
- Offer compensation in exchange for the land
- Engage in negotiation with the landowner
- Place a deposit with the Court prior to entry onto the property

 

Inverse Condemnation in Indiana

Governments may sometimes take actions that limit the use of your property. Typically, when the government plans on taking your property for a public purpose they institute a condemnation action using their powers of eminent domain. A more insidious inverse condemnation example is when the government action does not produce an obvious taking, such as acquisition of your land to build a road, but nonetheless significantly impacts the landowner's property value. In these instances, an Indiana landowner may bring an inverse condemnation lawsuit to hold the government accountable for the limitations they have created on your property.

READ MORE: INVERSE CONDEMNATION

 

Utility Takings in Indiana

It is our mission to hold the State of Indiana and utilities accountable to provide just compensation to landowners. Besides the State of Indiana, landowners can have their land taken by eminent domain and condemnation by utility companies including water departments, electric and pipeline companies. These takings can include sewer installations, electric line construction, natural gas pipelines, oil pipelines and even coal gasification pipelines.

READ MORE: UTILITY TAKINGS IN INDIANA

 

How Sever Storey Can Help You

From fruit stands to gravel mines, Sever Storey can help a landowner facing eminent domain for any type of property. Hire our team of eminent domain and condemnation lawyers in Indiana for the best chance at receiving the fair outcome you deserve.

Our firm will provide an honest evaluation of your case for free. At Sever Storey, we typically represent clients on a contingency fee basis. This means that we only receive a fee IF WE GET MORE THAN WHAT YOU WERE OFFERED. Because our fees are tied to your additional compensation, we carefully evaluate each case to determine if we could add additional compensation to your case. This is a free chance to have your case be evaluated by professionals with years of experience and is a service we provide that is well worth utilizing.

advetorial 1

With more than two decades of experience in the industry, our attorneys have helped thousands of landowners across the country to secure greater compensation and relocation benefits from the government. Our offices span from Texas to North Carolina and beyond. Allow us to use our expertise to defend your rights at a vulnerable time.

Whether or not you decide to hire our firm, I urge you to retain an attorney to represent you in this matter, to ensure that your interests are fully protected. If at any time, you have any questions about eminent domain, condemnation, or would like a free consultation contact me at 317-961-1202 or email your questions to phil@landownerattorneys.com.

FAQs

Eminent Domain Just Compensation in Indiana

The condemnor is legally required to offer just compensation in exchange for land, meaning that, prior to initiating any eminent domain proceedings against the landowner, the condemnor must issue a bona fide, good faith offer to the landowner. Though this offer must be issued, there is no requirement that it is a “good” offer, but merely an offer based on a previously created appraisal. Often, this offer is insufficient and does not properly compensate the landowner.

Eminent Domain Relocation Costs in Indiana

If you are forced by the government to move your retail space, warehouse, business, or other private entity, you will end up forking over a substantial amount of cash to do so. Under Indiana law, and in consideration of federal relocation guidelines, condemnors are also required to offer money to assist entities in relocating their operation if it will be displaced as a result of the taking. Just as the offer for the land may be insufficient, this offer can also fail to adequately reimburse the landowner for any anticipated relocation costs.

In the instance where a building, structure, billboard, improvement, or an entire piece of property is being acquired, you may be faced with relocation. This can be a very tricky and complicated process. There are substantial relocations benefits available in these types of acquisitions that are sometimes never used by landowners. For instance, did you know that federal law provides money for business reestablishment when a relocation occurs? In many cases the condemning authorities do not even discuss these benefits, leaving landowners in the dark. When you have a commercial relocation, it is essential that you hire professionals that can assist you in maximizing your benefit.

How Long Do Eminent Domain Cases Take in Indiana?

While some eminent domain cases can be resolved within a few months, others may last as long as a year or more. So what explains the variation in timeline?

The length of the case depends on many factors, such as the type and nature of the land being taken, the parties’ compensation postures and positions, and the reason for the condemnation. Many cases do not require litigation, but some do. Generally, a case that requires litigation is going to last longer than one that does not.

Can Eminent Domain in Indiana Be Stopped in Indiana?

It’s not often that eminent domain can be stopped—but it is possible in some cases. In order to halt eminent domain, a skilled attorney must demonstrate that the condemnor did not follow the law in attempting to exercise its ability. More often than not, stopping an eminent domain taking will not succeed, and the focus of the litigation ends up being compensation.

EMINENT DOMAIN, INDIANA CODE 32-24-1

Eminent domain procedure is governed by the Indiana Code.  This means that when a condemnor is taking your property they must follow the rules set out in the statute/code.  We have reproduced the code for your review below. The eminent domain attorneys at Sever Storey are very familiar with this particular set of laws.  if you have any questions about eminent domain procedure please feel free to call at 888-318-3761 or email me at phil@landownerattorneys.com.


IC 32-24
ARTICLE 24. EMINENT DOMAIN

IC 32-24-1
Chapter 1. General Procedures

IC 32-24-1-1
"Condemnor" defined
Sec. 1. As used in section 5 of this chapter, "condemnor" means any person authorized by Indiana law to exercise the power of eminent domain.
As added by P.L.2-2002, SEC.9.

IC 32-24-1-2
"Owner" defined
Sec. 2. As used in section 5 of this chapter, "owner" means the persons listed on the tax assessment rolls as being responsible for the payment of real estate taxes imposed on the property and the persons in whose name title to real estate is shown in the records of the recorder of the county in which the real estate is located.
As added by P.L.2-2002, SEC.9.

IC 32-24-1-3
Entry on land; purchase before instituting proceedings; surveys by public utilities or pipeline companies Sec. 3. (a) Any person that may exercise the power of eminent domain for any public use under any statute may exercise the power only in the manner provided in this article, except as otherwise provided by law.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (g), before proceeding to condemn, the person:
(1) may enter upon any land to examine and survey the property sought to be acquired; and
(2) must make an effort to purchase for the use intended the land, right-of-way, easement, or other interest, in the property.
(c) The effort to purchase under subsection (b)(2) must include the following:
(1) Establishing a proposed purchase price for the property.
(2) Providing the owner of the property with an appraisal or other evidence used to establish the proposed purchase price.
(3) Conducting good faith negotiations with the owner of the property.
(d) If the land or interest in the land, or property or right is owned by a person who is an incapacitated person (as defined in IC 29-3-1-7.5) or less than eighteen (18) years of age, the person seeking to acquire the property may purchase the property from the guardian of the incapacitated person or person less than eighteen (18) years of age. If the purchase is approved by the court appointing the guardian and the approval is written upon the face of the deed, the conveyance of the property purchased and the deed made and approved by the court are valid and binding upon the incapacitated person or persons less than eighteen (18) years of age.
(e) The deed given, when executed instead of condemnation, conveys only the interest stated in the deed.
(f) If property is taken by proceedings under this article, the entire fee simple title may be taken and acquired.
(g) This subsection applies to a public utility (as defined in IC 32-24-1-5.9(a)) or a pipeline company (as defined in IC 8-1-22.6-7). If a public utility or a pipeline company seeks to acquire land or an interest in land under this article, the public utility or pipeline company may not enter upon the land to examine or survey the property sought to be acquired unless either of the following occur:
(1) The public utility or the pipeline company sends notice by certified mail to the affected landowner (as defined in IC 8-1-22.6-2) of the public utility's or the pipeline company's intention to enter upon the landowner's property for survey purposes. The notice required by this subdivision must be mailed not later than fourteen (14) days before the date of the public utility's or the pipeline company's proposed examination or survey.
(2) The public utility or the pipeline company receives the landowner's signed consent to enter the property to perform the proposed examination or survey.

An affected landowner may bring an action to enforce this subsection in the circuit court of the county in which the landowner's property is located. A prevailing landowner is entitled to the landowner's actual damages as a result of the public utility's or the pipeline company's violation. In addition, the court may award a prevailing landowner reasonable costs of the action and attorney's fees.
As added by P.L.2-2002, SEC.9. Amended by P.L.163-2006, SEC.5; P.L.110-2007, SEC.2.

READ MORE: EMINENT DOMAIN, INDIANA CODE 32-24-1

PRIVATE TAKINGS, INDIANA CODE 32-24-4.5

In some very specific instances eminent domain can be used to take property from a person or business and given to another person or business. Generally, this can only occur if the taking is for a public purpose or the property is blighted.  The issues here are very complex.  The eminent domain attorneys at Sever Storey have conducted litigation on these issues and have a deep understanding of this statue.  If you have any questions related to private to private eminent domain proceedings in Indiana please call 888-318-3761 or call phil@landownerattorneys.com.

IC 32-24-4.5

Chapter 4.5. Procedures for Transferring Ownership or Control of Real Property Between Private Persons

IC 32-24-4.5-1
Application of chapter; "public use"
Sec. 1. (a) As used in this section, "public use" means the:
(1) possession, occupation, and enjoyment of a parcel of real property by the general public or a public agency for the purpose of providing the general public with fundamental services, including the construction, maintenance, and reconstruction of highways, bridges, airports, ports, certified technology parks, intermodal facilities, and parks;
(2) leasing of a highway, bridge, airport, port, certified technology park, intermodal facility, or park by a public agency that retains ownership of the parcel by written lease with right of forfeiture; or
(3) use of a parcel of real property to create or operate a public utility, an energy utility (as defined in IC 8-1-2.5-
2), or a pipeline company.
The term does not include the public benefit of economic development, including an increase in a tax base, tax revenues, employment, or general economic health.
(b) This chapter applies to a condemnor that exercises the power of eminent domain to acquire a parcel of real property:
(1) from a private person;
(2) with the intent of ultimately transferring ownership or control to another private person; and
(3) for a use that is not a public use.
(c) This chapter does not apply thirty (30) years after the acquisition of the real property.
As added by P.L.163-2006, SEC.17.

READ MORE: PRIVATE TAKINGS, INDIANA CODE 32-24-4.5

Eminent Domain Projects in Indiana

I-69 Section Six Land Acquisition

Over the course of the last five years the Indiana Department of Transportation has been installing I-69, a new major highway linking Indianapolis with Evansville. This project began with Section One five years ago and has caused massive disruptions to farm, commercial and residential landowners along its route.

INDOT is now beginning land acquisition for its final phase. Section 6 will reconfigure SR 37 and convert it to US 69. During this process many access points to SR 37 will be closed and considerable land will have to be acquired. In many instances the land being acquired will be some of the most valuable property in the area. The land acquisition process will cause substantial displacements of residential and commercial property. According to the most recent figures from INDOT 524 acres of land will be acquired causing 127 residential and 50 business relocations.

Sever Storey has represented over one hundred landowners affected by I-69 since its very inception on Section One.

YOU ARE ENTITLED TO JUST COMPENSATION

You are entitled to just compensation.  The constitution of Indiana mandates that you are entitled to just compensation.  Unfortunately, the amounts offered by the Department of Transportation don’t always provide what our firm believes is fair compensation.  It is imperative that you fully understand the impacts to your property before accepting any offer.  For instance, does the acquisition change the highest and best use of the property?  Does it affect zoning? Will access be impacted?  What about parking, landscaping, setbacks?  An impact to any of these items could cause substantial damage to the value of the property. Our firm has the experience to examine a taking, quickly determine what impacts have been missed by the Department of Transportation, and then fight for the true compensation to which you are entitled.

RELOCATION

In the instance where a building, structure, billboard, improvement, or an entire piece of property is being acquired, you may be faced with relocation. This can be a very tricky and complicated process. There are substantial relocations benefits available in these types of acquisitions that are sometimes never used by landowners. For instance, did you know that federal law provides money for business reestablishment when a relocation occurs? In many cases the DOT does not even discuss these benefits, leaving landowners in the dark. When you have a commercial relocation, it is essential that you hire professionals that can assist you in maximizing your benefit.

I-69 Corridor Map


Indiana I-69 Section Six Land Acquisition
Indiana I-69 Section Six Land Acquisition

More Detailed Information on This Project.

Contact Us

The South Shore Line Double Track Northwest Indiana (NWI)

South Shore line is proposing to improve existing rail line along approximately 25 miles through Lake, Porter and LaPorte Counties. The Double Track Project will add a second track to the current single track route and move other street running tracks. There are also plans for additional stations.

The South Shore Line Double Track Northwest Indiana

AFFECTED LANDOWNERS

Approximately 70 landowners will have their parcels affected. This means that landowners could be face with partial or complete takings of their property. Currently the project is in its public comment phase with plans for right of way acquisition to begin late 2017 and into 2018.

FIGHTING THE TAKE

Landowner are entering a crucial phase where they can provide public input and attempt to change or fight the take. Fighting a rail company improvement can be very difficult and confusing. Although no one can guarantee that a project of this size can be stopped, Sever Storey can make sure your voice will be heard during this crucial phase.

YOU ARE ENTITLED TO JUST COMPENSATION

You are entitled to just compensation.  The constitution of Indiana mandates that you are entitled to just compensation.  Unfortunately, the amounts offered by the South Shore Rail don’t always provide what our firm believes is fair compensation.  It is imperative that you fully understand the impacts to your property before accepting any offer. For instance, does the acquisition change the highest and best use of the property?  Does it affect zoning?  Will access be impacted?  What about parking, landscaping, setbacks?  An impact to any of these items could cause substantial damage to the value of the property. Our firm has the experience to examine a taking, quickly determine what impacts have been missed by the Department of Transportation, and then fight for the true compensation to which you are entitled.

Contact Us

Visit Our Office

Address:
881 3rd Avenue SW
Suite #101
Carmel, IN 46032

Phone:
(317) 575-9942 (Local)
(888) 318-3761 (Toll Free)
(317) 575-9943 (Fax)

Email:
phil@landownerattorneys.com

    Contact Our Firm


    COMMERCIAL PROPERTY

    What are the unique issues that face commercial property owners in condemnation that can make all the difference?

    LEARN MORE

    POWERLINES & PIPELINES

    Landowners forget this one thing when dealing with utility companies that want an easement across their land.

    LEARN MORE

    ROAD & REDEVELOPMENT TAKINGS

    What you need to know to be treated fairly by the condemning authority.

    LEARN MORE

    CONTACT US

    Before going alone against the State let us give you our opinion. It is our pledge that we will provide a free case review for any individual or business facing eminent domain or condemnation. Contact us now at 888-318-3761

      * DIsclaimer: Form submission doesn’t constitute a client-attorney relationship/contract.
      X