There are two essential issues in North Carolina eminent domain cases. First, does the government have the right to take your property? If it does, is fair compensation being offered for the property?
The power of eminent domain is broad, but there are limitations. The government can only take your property for a public purpose. The taking must be necessary—in other words, the public purpose cannot be achieved without taking your property—and the government cannot take more of your property than it needs to achieve this purpose.
Historically, it has been very difficult, though not impossible, to prove that a governmental authority lacks a public purpose for condemnation of private property. Much more frequently, an eminent domain case centers on whether the payment being offered in exchange for the property is truly fair.
Often, when the government has decided to condemn private property, they will make an offer to acquire it. If you receive such an offer, do not believe that you have no choice but to accept it. The eminent domain attorneys of The Odom Firm have helped many landowners to receive much more money for their property than they were initially offered. If our attorneys are unsuccessful in getting you more money than you were first offered, we will not take an attorney fee.
The lawyers at The Odom Firm can also help explain to you the laws in North Carolina that apply to your specific situation. You may have had your property taken before by the County using Chapter 40A of the General Statutes but now find yourself in a different situation with the North Carolina Department of Transportation taking your property using Chapter 136 of the General Statutes. The processes will be different under law depending on who is taking your property, and we understand those differences.
We invite you to contact The Odom Firm with any questions you may have about eminent domain laws in North Carolina.