Duerr Law provides skilled advice and focused representation to real estate clients in the Philadelphia region and throughout Eastern Pennsylvania. Through his 19 years of experience handling real estate matters as in-house counsel to PennDOT and serving seven years as a Commissioner for the Upper Dublin Planning Commission, Chris Duerr has developed a deep understanding of property law and property rights.
As counsel to PennDOT, Chris advised senior management and litigated eminent domain matters which included complex zoning, land use, environmental, development, business valuation, easements, and construction issues. While serving as a Commissioner for the Planning Commission in his home community, he regularly reviewed subdivision and land development submissions, participated in revisions to the Township’s SALDO and zoning regulations and was directly involved in the development of the community’s first Comprehensive Plan.
Our Real Estate services include:
- Eminent Domain Litigation and Negotiation
- Subdivision and Land Development
- Purchase/Sale of Real Estate
- Property Tax Assessments
- Quiet Title Actions
- Oil and Gas Pipeline Agreements
- Right of Way Agreements
- Oil, Gas and Mineral Agreements
- Drafting and Negotiating Leases
Eminent Domain Matters
The power of the federal and state government to take private property for a public purpose, even if the property owner objects, is known as eminent domain. The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution allows the government to take private property if the taking is for a public use and the owner is “justly compensated” (usually, paid fair market value) for his or her loss. A public use is virtually anything that is sanctioned by a federal or state legislative body, such as roads, oil and gas pipelines, parks, reservoirs, schools, hospitals, or other public buildings.
When the government condemns land for a public use, it will attempt to spend as little as possible in obtaining the property, often failing to fully value the landowner’s loss. If the government has condemned your land, you should seek the advice and assistance of a skilled attorney. The Eminent Domain Code provides for the reimbursement of up to $4,000 to the condemnee or landowner for the services of an attorney, appraiser and/or engineer to assist in evaluating the impact on the affected property. No landowner should accept the offered settlement amount without discussing the matter with an experienced eminent domain attorney and having their own appraisal completed. A qualified attorney can also carefully review your situation to determine whether you may be entitled to receive additional benefits beyond any settlement offer.
Contact Duerr Law for Assistance in Eminent Domain Matters
Duerr Law has extensive experience handling complex eminent domain matters. We can negotiate with the condemning entity and assist you in finding appraisers that will evaluate the impacts of the loss of property. If negotiations fail, Duerr Law is fully prepared to represent you before a Board of Viewers and, if necessary, through any appeals.