Understanding Eminent Domain: Know Your Rights

Don’t lose your land without a fight. Many of us, when faced with a complex problem we don’t understand, feel helpless. Especially when it comes to legal problems, it is normal to feel overwhelmed and worried.

One of the trickiest legal battles – eminent domain – often leaves the landowner feeling abandoned and taken advantage of. You need to seek legal counsel of you are confronted with an eminent domain claim on your property. Property owners have the power in eminent domain cases.  Having a lawyer remind you of that can help you present a strong case for keeping your home. 

A lawyer is crucial in the negotiation process. They can help you ascertain if you are being taken advantage of.  They know exactly what questions to ask about the appraisal and valuation of your home, and they are there to support whatever initiative you want to fight.

Without a lawyer, you may not realize if an appraiser has undervalued your property. By having a second opinion you can ensure that you are going to get the fairest and potentially most financial beneficial price for not only your house but your home. 

A lawyer is especially important if you face a condemnation lawsuit. This is a step in the legal process that involves going to trial over your property. If you are not properly represented it could affect the jury’s perception of your case.

If you need an expert witnesses to support your case, a good lawyer will know what questions are essential for them to answer to persuade the jury in your favor. Your lawyer can make sure that the opposing counsel does not abuse the witness on the stand., which also helps strengthen the way your case is presented during the trial.

Fighting Your Case

Always trust your gut.  If you feel you are being wrongfully associated with an eminent domain seizure, or that the project does not need your property, then do not be afraid to fight in court. Many times the government is attempting to seize your property because they might need it in the future. However, you need your property now, so tell the court.

Speak to legal counsel. They might be able to provide research and evidence that your gut feeling is right. Presenting this evidence is likely to curry the jury’s favor and perhaps win your condemnation trial.

While eminent domain is a government power, you have the right to fight to keep your property. Legal counsel can ensure that you are being represented using the strength of our legal system.

eminent domain infographic

Brian Wallace is a Columnist at Grit Daily. He is an entrepreneur, writer, and podcast host. He is the Founder and President of NowSourcing and has been featured in Forbes, TIME, and The New York Times. Brian previously wrote for Mashable and currently writes for Hacker Noon, CMSWire, Business 2 Community, and more. His Next Action podcast features entrepreneurs trying to get to the next level. Brian also hosts #LinkedInLocal events all over the country, promoting the use of LinkedIn among professionals wanting to grow their careers.

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