What are your legal rights when your land or property is being resumed through Compulsory Acquisition?

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Posted by: | Date: 26 November 2019

Why would my land be resumed?

With the many major infrastructure projects (such as construction of new roads and busways) currently being undertaken across Queensland, many landowners are having part, or all of their property resumed/acquired by an authority to make way for the infrastructure. This process is known as Compulsory Acquisition.

Compulsory acquisition occurs where a constructing authority (such as a local Council, the State Government or a public utility provider) seeks to resume all or part of the property under the Acquisition of Land Act 1967 (Qld).

Am I entitled to compensation?

If you are the landowner on the date the resumption notice is published by the Government or other relevant authority, you will be entitled to claim compensation.

In fact, anyone with an interest in the property (such a lessee or a licensee) may also be entitled to claim compensation.

How much compensation am I entitled to?

When assessing the amount of compensation payable, there are 2 major factors:

  1. the “value of the land” resumed; and
  2. “disturbance costs” you have incurred because of the resumption.

What if I do not want the land to be resumed?

Property can be ‘compulsorily acquired’ by a constructing authority with or without the agreement of a landowner.

If the property is to be acquired with the agreement of a landowner, it is essential that the landowner understands their legal rights and is able to negotiate a fair and just outcome so that the compensation received adequately reflects the loss of part or all of their property.

If the property is to be acquired without the agreement of the landowner, it is essential that the landowner understands their legal rights and is be able to take the steps necessary in the circumstances to protect and enforce their rights.

Strict time limits do apply and a failure by a landowner to take appropriate steps within the strict time frames required may result in a loss of their rights or have a significantly detrimental effect on their position.

Is there an entitlement to legal fees?

To enable landowners to be properly advised of their rights, the relevant laws and policies permit, in certain circumstances, landowners to claim their legal costs over and above the value of the property resumed.

Legal fees are generally included as part of the “disturbance costs”.

How can FC Lawyers assist with Compulsory Acquisition?

Our team is experienced in acting for landowners in compulsory acquisition matters and can provide legal advice tailored to your specific needs and circumstances. Contact our team today to discuss your legal requirements regarding compuslory acquisition.

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