Challenging Eminent Domain in North Carolina
When the government contacts you about seizing (or condemning) your property under the power of eminent domain, you may be left wondering what to do. As a property owner in North Carolina, you reserve the right to contest condemnation of your property through eminent domain if it was not conducted properly or in good faith. Here’s what you should know about challenging eminent domain in North Carolina and how an eminent domain attorney at Henson Fuerst can help.
Can I Challenge Land Condemnation of My Property?
As a business owner losing their property to the government through eminent domain, you are known as the aggrieved party. As an aggrieved party, you have the legal right to receive fair notice of your land condemnation, which means you are allowed enough time to seek legal advice and prepare a formal objection. Additionally, no government entity can take your property unannounced.
There also must be an opportunity for a fair hearing before you receive the final monetary award for your property. You may challenge the condemnation of your property if there is any question as to whether the taking is for public use or whether the government has provided just compensation.
While the North Carolina state constitution does not directly address eminent domain, Article I §19 states: “No person shall be taken, imprisoned, or disseized of his freehold, liberties, or privileges, or outlawed, or exiled, or in any manner deprived of his life, liberty, or property, but by the law of the land. No person shall be denied the equal protection of the laws; nor shall any person be subjected to discrimination by the state because of race, color, religion, or national origin.” The appellate courts have interpreted this article to similarly limit the government’s right to take property without just compensation.
A critical element in the eminent domain challenging process is proving that your property is not necessary or appropriate for public use. Historically, “public use” has been broadly defined in land condemnation cases in a legal sense and has allowed big corporations to get away with taking private property for their development. Unfortunately, it has also allowed the government to get away with taking more than what it needs from private property owners, taking advantage of the process. To best avoid this as a property owner, it is essential that you respond to a land condemnation notice as soon as possible with the close supervision of a land condemnation lawyer.
Eminent Domain Attorneys Who Stand Up For You
Land condemnation through eminent domain could uproot your business and cause you to alter your plans, leaving you feeling powerless. However, a trustworthy and reputable eminent domain attorney at Henson Fuerst will be your advocate and empower you by protecting your rights and taking on the government to fiercely defend your rights.
We have represented businesses, corporations, partnerships, families, and individuals in significant damage condemnation cases for over 45 years with a proven track record of success. If you are a commercial property owner in North Carolina whose land is being condemned through eminent domain, contact the eminent domain attorneys at Henson Fuerst to understand your legal options. To do so, fill out and submit a case evaluation form online or call our office toll-free at 919-781-1107.