The last thing a property owner in Florida wants to see happen to their property is see it taken away from them. However, that is what could happen if the government seeks to use a private property owner's property for the benefit of the public. Through the act of eminent domain, the government could take some or all of one's property for the purpose of serving the public. However, property owners do have rights in these matters that should not be overlooked.
To begin, property owners should be knowledgeable of the eminent domain process, as the government must follow a set of various procedures before it can take property. The basis of eminent domain is that land could be taken away from property owners if it is for the public good. However, in order to be taken, there must be just compensation. Thus, if the government seeks to take private property to help build a highway, the landowner must be justly compensated for their property.
Just compensation means that the landowner will be paid the amount he or she can expect to get for their property on the open market. Various factors come into play when assessing the value of the property. This may include factors that could increase the value of the property, such as a re-zoning. At this phase of the process, the parties may not come to an agreement on a price. This could give rise to legal proceedings in order to resolve this issue.
Eminent domain matters can get complex and confusing; thus, it is vital to take the time to understand the situation and what rights a property has. A legal professional can help provide guidance in these matters; helping to ensure one understands their rights and options in the situation.