Florida Eminent Domain Law Blog



Common Deficiencies in Eminent Domain Real Estate Appraisals

Eminent domain proceedings are legal proceedings brought by the government, or an entity acting on behalf of the government, to seize private property for public purposes. The government has the right to seize private property for public use only if the property owner receives full compensation. During the eminent domain proceedings, the issue typically turns on whether the landowner has received a fair appraisal in order to receive full compensation for land. Oftentimes, a property is not properly appraised and just compensation is not offered. While the following list below is not an exclusive list, these are common deficiencies that landowners and landowner attorneys can look for when evaluating the adequacy of the government’s real estate valuation. Read Full Post

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Order of Taking: What You Should Know When the Government Sues to Quickly Take Your Property Under Eminent Domain

Whether you are a landowner, a tenant or a business on property subject to eminent domain, you should not be surprised when the government (or condemning authority) files a lawsuit against you to take your property. After all, the condemning authority is required to follow strict pre-suit notice and negotiation protocols before any lawsuit is filed to take your property. See Brandon C. Meadows’ and Charles B. Jimerson’s article on the procedures the government must follow before filing an eminent domain lawsuit.

Nonetheless, you have been sued by the government, which is seeking an order of taking against your property. Understanding the process and your substantive rights in the lawsuit will ensure that you are best equipped to obtain full and fair compensation for your property. Read Full Post

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What Procedures Must the Government Follow Before Filing an Eminent Domain Lawsuit Against You?

Before filing an eminent domain lawsuit against a property owner, Florida law requires the government or the condemning authority to conduct very specific procedures. These special procedures and considerations are designed to ensure that the taking of any property is valid and that the property owners are given a fair opportunity to resolve the issues with the government before the suit is filed. It is critical for property owners to understand their pre-suit rights throughout this process to obtain full and fair compensation for any taking of their property. Read Full Post

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When Government Actions Rise to Inverse Condemnation Claims

Eminent domain is a legal proceeding brought by the government, or an entity acting on behalf of the government, where the government actor asserts its authority to condemn private property for public use. Lingle v. Chevron, 544 U.S. 528 (2005). Under the U.S. and Florida Constitutions, the government can take private property only in limited situations and must pay the private property owner just compensation for the land it takes. But what happens when there is a de facto governmental taking of private property without any eminent domain proceedings and no just compensation paid to the property owner? What recourse does the property owner have after-the-fact? The available remedy is called inverse condemnation. Read Full Post

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Eminent Domain in Florida: Recovery of Attorney Fees

Roadwork and other governmental projects are prevalent in Florida and often require the government to acquire private property. Both the Florida Constitution and the United States Constitution provide that no private property shall be taken for a public purpose without full compensation. A land owner’s constitutional right to full compensation for property taken by the government includes the ability to recover reasonable attorneys’ fees in the process. JEA v. Williams. The ability to recover attorneys’ fees, even in pre-suit negotiations, is an important consideration for owners when dealing with a government entity seeking to acquire the owner’s real property. Read Full Post

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Riparian Rights in Florida: The Right to Accretions and Relictions

Ownership of waterfront property is very desirable in Florida and often involves unique real property considerations. But when we discuss waterfront property in Florida, one of the most attractive and most sought-out features is an incredible water view. When it comes to private waterfront property ownership, it can be difficult to distinguish where the private land rights cease and the sovereign land ownership begins. More difficult is when your neighbor begins construction or activity that actually blocks your waterfront view. As a result, a subset of real property law has emerged to address what is called “riparian rights.” Read Full Post

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Inverse Condemnation Claims in Florida

Real property rights in the United States and in Florida are constitutionally protected. In Florida, Article X of the Florida Constitution protects a “taking” of one’s private property without just or full compensation. When government action results in a “taking” of private property, such action results in eminent domain or inverse condemnation claims. The focus of this post is inverse condemnation claims. Read Full Post

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Eminent Domain and Attorneys’ Fees: The Case for Excessive Litigation

In Florida, recovery of attorneys’ fees in eminent domain and inverse condemnation proceedings is governed by Sections 73.091 and 73.092 of the Florida Statutes. Section 73.092 provides a mechanism for determining an award of attorney fees, based on the “benefits achieved for the client.” But, what if the state agency/condemning authority excessively litigated the case, such that the formulaic computation under that statute was unfair to the property owner? A recent Florida Supreme Court case addressed this issue. Joseph B. Doerr Trust v. Central Florida Expressway Authority. Read Full Post

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Protecting Property Interests and Rights in Eminent Domain Actions and Government Takings: Part V

This blog post is part V in a series of posts to assist private property owners with protecting their property interests and rights in eminent domain actions and government takings. Part I provided a general overview of eminent domain and the government’s ability to take private property for public use. Part II discussed Florida law on the allowable scope for the taking of private property, which is determined by the element of reasonable necessity. Part III addressed regulatory takings, and Part IV explained how “just compensation” is determined. The fifth and final addition to this series concerns a property owner’s entitlement to attorney’s fees in eminent domain proceedings. Read Full Post

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Riparian Rights in Florida: The Right to a Waterfront View

Ownership of waterfront property is very desirable in Florida and often involves unique real property considerations. But when we discuss waterfront property in Florida, one of the most attractive and most sought out features is an incredible water view. When it comes to private waterfront property ownership, it can be difficult to distinguish where the private land rights cease and the sovereign land ownership begins. More difficult is when your neighbor begins construction or activity that actually blocks your waterfront view. Read Full Post

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