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If you are looking for the best eminent domain attorney in NJ, then you are in the right place. 

Our NJ real estate attorney has extensive experience handling condemnation matters. In addition, she can also provide relocation assistance if required. Call us today to discuss your case.



The best Eminent Domain Attorney in NJ

At the eminent domain law firm of Curbelo Law, you can find a select team of professionals willing to help with all aspects of eminent domain. 

The firm is known for representing private property owners, developers and government entities in condemnation cases in New Jersey.

Our attorney Carolina T. Curbelo has more than 10 years of experience litigating the right that the government has on:

  • The taking of private properties in public projects.
  • Redevelopment matters.
  • Litigating cases in relation to public services.
  • Real estate valuation.
  • Environmental rights.
  • Land use data.
  • Prosecution of claims of reverse expropriation.
  • Commercial litigation. 
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At Curbelo Law, our clients can find and expert in eminent domain as well as the best New Jersey real estate litigation attorney.

Services Provided By Our NJ Eminent Domain Attorney

Our NJ eminent domain attorney provides the following services:

  • Pre-condemnation negotiations with the government.
  • Redevelopment projects.
  • Pre-condemnation planning.
  • Efforts to designate properties that require relocation.
  • Relocation benefits.
  • Inverse condemnation.
  • Valuation of large undeveloped tracts, multi-family residential and commercial buildings, industrial space, and special use properties.
  • Loan transaction issues.
  • Environmental remediation matters.

Who Are Our Clients

The NJ eminent domain attorney at Curbelo Law represents the following clients:

  • Secured lenders.
  • Government entities.
  • Private owners in all types of properties. For example:
    • Commercial.
    • Residential.
    • Industrial.
  • Developers.

How Do I Fight Condemnation In NJ?

The owners of private properties have the right to fight against the right of expropriation in court. The only way to achieve this, however, is by showing that the government does not plan to use the land for a justified public use. 

eminent domain law in new jersey

In accordance with the law in New Jersey; NJSA 20:3-1, et seq, a property may only be taken for lawful public use or a public purpose. Therefore, there is a 4-step process for condemnation in New Jersey:

  1. Attempting to resolve the acquisition through good faith negotiations. This step must be done before expropriation litigation begins.
  2. The final sentence of a court that grants the power of expropriation to the expropriating agency.
  3. Non-binding arbitration of the issue of just compensation by a panel of commissioners established by the court.
  4. A jury trial on the matter of just compensation.

In any case, owners who do not wish to sell their land to the government are advised to assess their possibilities. Through our lawyer, it can be discovered if the government has been faithful to its constitutional duties to expropriate the property.

What Are The Three Requirements For The Eminent Domain Law?

The right of expropriation is subject to the following requirements:

  • The property acquired must be intended for public use.
  • The state has to pay fair compensation in exchange for the property it wishes to expropriate.
  • No individual should be deprived of their property without due process of law.

The condemnation clause in the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution prohibits the government from taking private property if it will not be for public use, even if there is just compensation.

In general, the right of expropriation is used to provide land to:

  • Public schools.
  • Hospitals.
  • Public services.
  • Roads.

Limits To The Governmental Power Of The Right Of Expropriation

The Fifth Amendment clause also places certain limits on the government’s power to exactions for development permits. These can be:

  • Dedications of real property.
  • Rates.
  • Obligations designated to offset the impact of the project under development.

In most cases, attorneys in this area work alongside experts in appraisal, economics, environmental remediation, construction, real estate developers, and other related professionals to ensure fair treatment. 

Does The Expropriation Have Compensation?

Initially, yes. By law, both the government and any other expropriator taking private property from an individual through eminent domain must pay fair compensation. 

In the clause of the Fifth Amendment of the American Constitution, it is stated that the private property of an individual cannot be taken for public use without just compensation. 

How Is Fair Compensation Determined In New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the law requires that a just compensation payment be made in an amount that compensates the owner for the loss of their property.

  • This amount is generally measured by the fair market value of the property taken from the owner.
  • In partial condemnations, just compensation also includes any decrease in the value of the remaining property.
  • The condemning agency and the owner must consider ways to mitigate the damage or impact on the remaining property.
  • Just compensation is first determined in New Jersey through a non-binding arbitration hearing. This hearing is also known as the condemnation commissioners’ hearing.
  • The commissioners are 3 arbitrators established by the court in the county where the property is located. 
  • After the award is determined, one or both parties may appeal the award and request that the compensation be determined at trial in the Superior Court of New Jersey. 
  • In the case of a trial appeal, the commissioners’ decision is not considered by the court or disclosed to the jury. 
new jersey home appraisal

One way to find out the value of a property is through a New Jersey home appraisal. Check our respective article to learn more about this topic.

What Is A Reverse Condemnation In Expropriations?

Reverse condemnation occurs when the government seizes property without fairly compensating the property owner. If this happens, the property owner can sue the government.

Sometimes the government takes or damages property without following proper procedures. Also, in other cases, the government does not pay fair compensation. If these scenarios occur, a “reverse conviction” claim may arise. 

Generally, a reverse conviction occurs when:

  1. There is a physical expropriation. For example, seizure of land, denial of access or continued possession after the lease has expired.
  2. The government imposes a regulation. This can occur when the government regulates the property or imposes other restrictions on the property that unreasonably restricts its use.

Our condemnation attorney works hard to protect the rights of our clients in New Jersey. With her experience, the attorney can handle claims arising from:

  • Installations of electrical lines or pipes.
  • Regulatory takings.
  • Road construction or installation.
  • Flooding or water diversions.

Floods can happen anytime, anywhere. Therefore, it is important to have flood insurance in New Jersey. In our site you can find a blog where we explain this policy in detail.

Frequently Asked Questions About The Law Of Eminent Domain In New Jersey

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Is it possible to prevent the government from taking my property?

If a property meets all the requirements established by law for its public use and need, then the government cannot be prevented from taking the property. However, it is possible to fight for compensation.

What happens if the right of expropriation affects my business?

Unfortunately, most of the business owners affected by the right of expropriation are not compensated for the negative impact on their business. 
Therefore, it is important to have a professional like our attorney to maximize your compensation received from the government.

What is the fair market value on my property?

When the government exercises the right of expropriation on a property, it must pay the fair market value. However, in most cases, the government will offer a lower price.
It is for this reason that the intervention of a lawyer is essential to handle this situation and establish the best possible compensation.

Does New Jersey have the power to legally take my property?

The State of New Jersey is legally permitted to exercise its right to condemn properties. In the event that the negotiations do not yield an agreed sale price, the state may file a lawsuit to acquire the property.
However, for the state to acquire the property, it must meet the requirements of public necessity or for a public purpose.

Curbelo Law NJ Eminent Domain Attorney

When it comes to eminent domain in NJ, most homeowners believe that the government’s offer is the best they can take. However, our attorney is trained to obtain fair compensation for our clients.

  • In New Jersey, it is essential to have a good attorney experienced in these condemnation matters. This is because over the years, homeowners have fallen victim to “redevelopment” projects.
  • For our firm, the property rights established by the US Constitution are sacred and must be respected. Therefore, we fight tirelessly for our clients.
  • At Curbelo Law, we know how the system works and what kind of procedures must be followed. Therefore, with us you will be in excellent hands.

The expropriation can become an endless labyrinth for the owners. However, with us they will be able to get the help they need to overcome this complex situation. Contact our firm today so we can help you.