Eminent Domain Law Firm Tampa

Tampa Bay Eminent Domain Overview

If you receive notice that your Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, or Hillsborough County property may be seized by eminent domain, you need to act fast. Eminent domain in Florida is a very complicated legal matter, and you need expert legal advice about what to do. Contact an Eminent Domain Law Firm Tampa today. Attorney Eric T. Taylor can help. He represents Tampa Bay residents and businesses facing the prospect of losing their property by eminent domain. Attorney Taylor and his Tampa Eminent Domain Law Firm have the experience and knowledge you need when the government is using Florida eminent domain law to its advantage to force you to see your property to the government. Attorney Eric T. Taylor is considered one of the top Eminent Domain Lawyers in Tampa. Turning to him in your moment of need can make the difference for you by holding the government to its burden.

Eminent Domain Law Firm Tampa

What Is Eminent Domain In Tampa?

Eminent domain is the government's ability to take your private property for public use. Eminent domain is often called a "taking" or "condemnation." The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution permits government takings if, and only if, the government justly compensates the landowner by paying fair market value of the land taken.

Article X, section 6(a) of the Florida State Constitution also allows governmental takings. Florida's Constitution imposes stricter limitations than the federal constitution. The Florida Constitution permits takings of private land for public use. Florida law considers these takings as valid.

Some examples of invalid purposes are:

  • Taking private land and using it for a private purpose;
  • To eliminate blight;
  • To eliminate a public nuisance; and
  • To eliminate slums.

What Is The Procedure The Government Must Follow?

Hillsborough County has the statutory authority to force property sales by eminent domain. Municipalities such as the cities of Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater also have the same authority. Florida's statutes found in Chapters 73, 74, 163, and 166 govern what the particular governmental agency must do before it forces you to sell your property. These laws also describe the rights you have as a property owner as well as place limitations on what the government can do with your property.

The government cannot take your property without proper notice. The government must serve you with a summons to appear in court to show cause why your property should not be subject to the eminent domain authority. Additionally, the government must publish the notice in a local newspaper.

You can object to the eminent domain petition in court. At the hearing, you have certain rights. Some of the rights are:

  • the right to be heard in opposition to the petition and challenge the government's authority to do what it proposes to do such as dispute that the project is for a public purpose, or
  • Challenge whether the amount for which the government proposed to purchase your house is unjust. The landowner does not automatically get a hearing. The landowner, referred to in Florida law as the defendant, must request a hearing. Failing to request a hearing means that the defendant has waived their rights to contest the taking and title, or ownership, in the land will then be vested in the government.

Call the Tampa Eminent Law Firm of Eric T. Taylor Immediately If You Receive Notice Of An Eminent Domain Proceeding

Tampa Bay eminent domain proceedings can be complicated and stressful. Do not try to negotiate a settlement with the government without talking to a qualified Tampa Bay eminent domain attorney. You have rights, and Attorney Eric T. Taylor knows how to protect your rights and property. Call Attorney Taylor today at 813-259-4444 to schedule your free consultation.