• Ziggurat Realestatecorp

Power of eminent domain

The municipality sends you a letter where he offered to purchase your property for a certain price. You refuse as you want to hold on to your investment but the municipality informs you that they will still take your property, which shall be used to build their new public road.


Can the municipality legally do this?


Provision of Section 9, Republic Act (RA) 7160 otherwise known as the "Local Government Code of 1991" which provides that:


"Section 19. Eminent Domain. - A local government unit may, through its chief executive and acting pursuant to an ordinance, exercise the power of eminent domain for public use, or purpose or welfare for the benefit of the poor and the landless, upon payment of just compensation, pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution and pertinent laws: Provided, however, That the power of eminent domain may not be exercised unless a valid and definite offer has been previously made to the owner, and such offer was not accepted.


Provided, further, That the local government unit may immediately take possession of the property upon the filing of the expropriation proceedings and upon making a deposit with the proper court of at least fifteen percent (15%) of the fair market value of the property based on the current tax declaration of the property to be expropriated.


Provided, finally, That, the amount to be paid for the expropriated property shall be determined by the proper court, based on the fair market value at the time of the taking of the property."


Based on the above-mentioned provision, local government units have the power of eminent domain which authorizes them to expropriate private properties to be used for public purposes provided that just compensation be paid in exchange thereof.


So the municipality can take your private property through their power of eminent domain provided that the limitations provided in Section 19 of RA 7160 are observed.

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