Compulsory purchase and statutory rights.
This is when the government, local council or utility company, has the legal right to buy or take rights over your property, if it falls within a public or private construction project such as: * Airport expansions. * Electricity pylons and cables. * Flood defence works.
Housing developments. * Rail or road building projects. * Sewer, water or gas pipe schemes. Different Compulsory Purchase or Statutory powers are needed to implement the above schemes.
For example water pipes are laid under Statutory Rights under the Water Industry Act 1991 and a road bypass will have its own Compulsory Purchase Order, through the Acquisition of Land Act 1981.
In some cases, the owners and occupiers of the properties to be acquired or affected by the scheme will be served notices, with differing expiry times. If you own an easement under the legislation, then you are not entitled to a notice. All schemes provide compensation to owners and occupiers directly affected by the scheme.
Compensation is paid to reflect the losses and disturbance caused by a Compulsory Purchase or Statutory Scheme on an owner or occupier's property. It is based on the market value of the land taken ignoring any increase which the acquisition/development may add to the value. For more information refer to the Land Compensation Act 1961.
It is up to the claimant to prove any losses to claim for compensation. In the majority of cases the acquiring authority may offer an advance payment of compensation depending on the rights or land taken.
If you receive a Compulsory Purchase Order to purchase your land or a Statutory Notice to lay pipes or cables, call the RICS Compulsory Purchase helpline for advice on 0870 333 1600.
It is up to you to tell the authority how their scheme will affect you.
Ask for 'accommodation works'. These can help limit the affects of schemes on your property. For example an underpass access to severed land or adding extra trees to lessen traffic noise. Claimants' reasonable professional fees can be claimed.
* Tony Filice, Spokesperson for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Wales Residential and Director of multi award winning Kelvin Francis Ltd, Cardiff.