Challenging Eminent Domain in McKinney

The Fifth Amendment to the Federal Constitution, along with Article I, Section 17 of the Texas Constitution, allows the government to seize private property from a landowner for public use. Crucially, however, the state or federal government must offer the property owner adequate compensation for their seized property.

As a private landowner, you may be able to challenge eminent domain, including the amount of compensation offered. If you find yourself in the middle of eminent domain proceedings, an experienced condemnation lawyer could assist you with challenging eminent domain in McKinney.

Commissioner Hearing Process

In some cases, the government may not fairly or adequately compensate private landowners for their property. If the buyer and the landowner cannot reach an agreement, the buyer will file a condemnation petition, and a judge will appoint three “commissioners” to resolve the monetary dispute.

During the commissioner hearing, the landowner may be able to challenge the government’s proposed compensation in either of the following ways:

  • Bringing evidence which shows that the subject property has a higher value than what the buyer is offering (such as a property appraisal)
  • Introducing evidence which shows that the condemnation will cause the property owner undue financial injury or hardship

Once the commissioners hear all of the evidence, they will make a decision as to the value of adequate compensation for the property in question. Unlike courtroom judges, commissioners may not consider legal questions at this level, such as whether eminent domain is proper. Accordingly, a McKinney landowner may not legally challenge eminent domain during this step of the process.

Filing an Objection with the Court

If the landowner is dissatisfied with the commissioners’ award, they have a right to file an objection with the court. The landowner must file this objection by the first Monday after the 20th day following the date on which the commissioners file their decision.

Once the landowner files an objection, the court will set the condemnation case for trial. The trial will proceed before a jury or a judge, who will decide the case.

Condemnation Trials

During a condemnation trial, a landowner has the legal right to bring evidence challenging the commissioners’ award. The landowner may also challenge the buyer’s common carrier status. To acquire property by eminent domain, the government may only acquire the land for public use. At the trial level, the landowner may introduce evidence which shows that the buyer is acquiring the land for private use, meaning that they are not a common carrier, or that the property is not necessary for the buyer’s proposed project.

Although a judge may consider these direct challenges to eminent domain at trial, the commissioners may not consider these issues at the hearing level.

Call a Lawyer for Assistance Challenging Eminent Domain in McKinney

If the government or a corporation has approached you about purchasing your property, it may be beneficial to have a lawyer by your side, representing you at every legal proceeding.

A McKinney condemnation lawyer could help you challenge the government’s compensation offer, as well as the government or corporation’s right to acquire your property. A lawyer can also address all of your legal questions about challenging eminent domain in McKinney, helping you achieve the best possible result in your case.

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Mary Thompson
Mary Thompson
20:51 25 Feb 20
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Michael Taylor
19:46 12 Feb 20
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Zane Allen
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Elisa Dean
15:38 16 Dec 19
I recommend The Mccraw Law Group to anyone who is hurt in an accident.My experience has been wonderful. They do the... best they can to get the most from the insurance company. My communications have been with Vanessa, Suzanne and Jason.Jason is very special to me. He understood my needs and was very caring and the sweetest attorney I have ever met. He was honest and did everything he could to bring my case to a conclusion.Vanessa and Suzanne are very sweet and are there to help every step of the way.read more
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Fernando Salas
19:07 10 Dec 19
First time needing a lawyer. Everything went extremely smooth and quick. Mr. McCraw went to my house after my car wreck... and I knew at that point that I was in good hands. Everyone who works there are so nice and will answer any questions or concerns you have. Thank you guys for all of your help.read more
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Adelyn Braswell
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When me and my family recently got hit by a drunk driver. They helped us with everything we needed. We had so many... questions and didn’t hesitate to answer. It was our first time with any lawyer so they made everything so easy for us, and got it all done so quick. They did everything in their power to get us all the money we deserved. They were all so friendly and I would recommend them to anyone.read more
Courtney Brooks
Courtney Brooks
16:12 12 Sep 19
I had a wonderful experience from beginning to end with the McCraw Law Group. My case was accepted and I was kept up to... date on how it was proceeding, and when it came to a settlement, we got more than expected. Everyone was very kind, the court proceedings went smoothly and I was extremely satisfied. I will definitely use them again if anything else arises.read more
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