Eminent domain is a highly technical area of law that often uses language that may be difficult to understand without significant legal training. As a result, if your property is the subject of a proposed use of eminent domain, you probably have a lot of questions and may be doing some research on your own. Here are some plain English definitions of legal terms that often arise in eminent domain proceedings.

  • Eminent Domain: Eminent domain is the power of a government to take private property for a public use. In some cases, governments authorize other parties to exercise eminent domain.
  • Condemnation: Condemnation is the legal process through which a party takes property in an eminent domain action.
  • Takings Clause: The Takings Clause is found in the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and it is what allows the federal government to exercise eminent domain.
  • Necessity: Generally speaking, exercises of eminent domain must be limited to taking the amount of private property necessary to achieve the proposed public use. For example, if four acres of property are needed to build a school, the state cannot take eight.
  • Real Property: Real property is land and any additional property attached to it. It includes fixtures, rivers, canals, ponds, anything growing on the land, structures, roads, and any improvements.
  • Relocation Benefits: Parties who are forced to relocate because of an exercise of eminent domain are often entitled to relocation benefits, which are intended to compensate those affected by a condemnation for the costs associated with moving a business or residence. Importantly, both owners and tenants are entitled to relocation benefits.

Call Sever Storey Today to Speak with an Experienced Eminent Domain Lawyer

If your property is the subject of a condemnation action, it is essential that you do everything possible to protect your legal rights. The eminent domain attorneys of Sever Storey will thoroughly review your case, determine whether the proposed taking is valid, and, if it is, ensure that you receive the compensation to which you are entitled. To schedule a free consultation with a member of our team, call our office today at 888-318-3761 or contact us online.