Eminent Domain

Eminent Domain is an interesting state of affairs in which someone besides yourself is able, and authorized, to take possession of your land acreage or property. This can be done by states and by national governments who are even able to extend that ability to others, including other individuals, corporate businesses and other types of governmental bodies.

This generally happens when the governing body is using the land for the betterment of a public situation, or for bringing better financial status to a particular area. Private property that is used in this way is often used for public facilities, or taken down in order to make way for train lines and automobile throughways.

There are laws that keep the enacting of Eminent Domain within reasonable limits, ensuring that this use of power is due to public betterment or increased public safety. In fact, one famous case in Ohio is the Rookwood Partners v. Joe Horney case in which Mr. Horney became the one individual – out of 71 others – to keep his rental home when Rookwood Partners was attempting to purchase all houses in the Edwards and Edmondson roads area. By law the owners are to be paid fair market value for their confiscated land, acreage or property. Rookwood Partners attempted to use Eminent Domain to take his house without his approval, but the Ohio High Court decreed that Eminent Domain could not be affected on behalf of a private business undertaking. This became a landmark case not just for Cincinnati and Ohio, but for the Country.