What Compensation is Considered Just

Whether a proffered compensation is just or not is a judicial question. Generally, an appropriate measure is the fair market value of the property at the time of the taking, plus any subsequent accrued interest. An objecting claimant will not succeed in arguing speculative value, or the fact that the property could be used for a special purpose which would tend to enhance its value. Instead, an objective assessment of the property in its present state is the correct measure, although consideration may include assessment of market value at its best and most profitable use.

Notwithstanding, the compensation must be fair to both the property owner and the public. This assessment involves consideration of such factors as the cost of reproducing the property, its present market value, and the resulting damage or decrease in value to any remaining/residual property of the owner. It also may include consideration of the price originally paid for the property, and any buildings, crops, timber, or minerals located on the property. Additional compensation may be added for any delay in payment, as interest is recoverable when payment is not made at the time of the taking.


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