Thanks to eminent domain laws, the government has the right to seize your property in California if it stands in the way of development. However, the government can’t take it without warning. It must give you advance notice and offer payment in exchange for your property. You may not be able to save your property, but you have certain legal rights during the process.
Do you have to accept the payment that the government offers?
When it comes to eminent domain, you don’t have to accept the government’s first offer. In fact, an attorney may help you get more money for your property. You may be able to argue that the government’s appraisal is inaccurate or claim that you deserve more money for your land.
If the government makes a fair offer, you could accept it and find a new place to live. You could also make a counteroffer that accurately reflects your property’s value. If you can’t come to an agreement, you could take the issue to court. Your attorney may challenge the government’s reasoning for taking your property or point out that it doesn’t need to seize the entire property for its project.
Is it possible to save your house?
Nothing is guaranteed when it comes to eminent domain. You may be able to save your house, but you also may have to accept the payment and move on. At the very least, a lawyer may be able to help you negotiate a fair offer. He or she could also help you take the issue to court, so you don’t have to give up your property without a fight. The government may not take your entire property if your attorney could prove that it doesn’t need all of it for its road or public space.