Property or land resumption can be difficult and stressful to come to terms with. When the government provides an offer for your property or part of your property, it can be hard to know where to start or what to do.
ROCHE Legal have a property valuer on staff to assist with all property resumption claims. We can help you make sense of the situation and get you the compensation you need.
What is property resumption?
Property resumption is when a government agency takes the whole or part of your land for use for particular purposes, such as construction of roads, tunnels and public transport stations. When this happens, the government agency provides an offer for the land to be resumed to the owner or person with the legal interest.
Property resumption claims don’t just have to be for land above the ground. In some circumstances it is possible to lodge a claim for compensation where land under the ground is resumed, for instance because of the construction of a tunnel. It’s important to seek legal advice as soon as possible to make sure you get the offer and compensation adequate for your individual situation.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will I know if my property is to be resumed?
You will receive a notice from the government agency which intends to resume the property. That notice will tell you whether the whole or part of the property will be resumed. If you receive a notice advising you that your property may be resumed, you should seek legal advice straight away to ensure your rights are protected.
Can I challenge the resumption?
It is possible to object to the resumption of your property, if you believe the project can reasonably be completed without your land being resumed. There are strict time frames for lodging an objection, so you should seek legal advice as soon as you are notified that your land is to be resumed.
Do I have a claim for compensation?
You may have a property resumption claim if you have a legal interest (such as owner or tenant of premises where a business is carried out) in the land due to be resumed.
Who can I bring the claim against?
The state, federal and local government all have power to resume land. Private individuals and companies do not have power to resume land.
What can I claim compensation for?
Compensation is assessed based on the market value of your property at the date you were notified your property was to be resumed. Additionally, you may also be entitled to claim compensation for a number of other costs that you may incur because of the resumption, including stamp duty, borrowing costs and moving costs.
If you operate a business from land which is to be resumed (whether you own or lease the premises) you may be entitled to compensation for the impact on your business. You may be entitled to payment of relocation costs, or compensation equivalent to the value of the business.
What has to be proven for my claim to be successful?
You need to prove that you are the owner of the land or property being resumed.
Are there any important time limits to bring a claim?
You must lodge a claim for compensation within 3 years of your land being resumed, but its best to seek legal advice as soon as possible. You can lodge a claim as soon as your land has been formally resumed. You will be notified by the relevant government department when this has occurred.
Who pays me the compensation?
The relevant government agency is obliged to pay all compensation costs associated with land resumptions. If you seek legal help, any legal cost associated with the land resumption will be included in your compensation claim and will be paid by the government agency.
How much compensation can I claim?
This depends on the assessed value of the property being resumed. For an official independent valuation report, please contact us.
What happens if I am not happy with the offer the government agency has made to me?
If you are not satisfied with this offer, you may enter into negotiations with the government agency either individually or by engaging a solicitor. The costs of engaging a solicitor to undertake these negotiations must be paid by the government agency. If you chose to accept the offer, settlement will be arranged. You will be required by the government agency to sign a deed before you receive your compensation. You should obtain legal advice about the contents of that deed. If agreement cannot be reached through negotiations, either party may ask the Land Court to independently determine the compensation to be paid.
How long does a claim for compensation take?
How long a claim takes will vary from case to case, ranging from weeks to years. Starting negotiations as soon as your claim has been lodged, including attending an early settlement conference, often helps you to receive your compensation earlier. Generally, most government agencies will make an offer of compensation to you as soon as you have lodged a claim for compensation. You should obtain legal advice when you receive an offer to ensure that it covers all the compensation you are entitled to claim. The costs of obtaining legal advice must be paid by the government agency.
Can I receive a portion of my compensation before the full compensation amount is agreed?
You can request an ‘advance’ on your compensation any time after you have lodged your Property Resumption Claim.
Can I sell my property to the government agency before it is formally resumed?
If you are suffering “hardship”, you can request the government agency purchase your property early.