COLORADO EMINENT DOMAIN – What to Do if the Government is Going to Acquire or Condemn Your Property.

1 – Get Informed
As soon as you hear that a project is coming that will affect your property, gather as much information about the project as possible such as project plans, resolutions, and reports. Keep any correspondence related to the project. Take good notes of every conversation you have with a government representative.

2 – Get Connected
It is always encouraging to talk to someone else who has a similar problem. Use local organizations to network with your neighbors. Find out if there is a local citizen’s group that can support you through the process, and if there isn’t one, then maybe you should start it!

3 – Get an Appraisal
Colorado or federal law oftentimes requires the government to pay for you to get an appraisal of your property. This is almost always a good idea, especially when the government will pay for it! Many landowners don’t get an appraisal because they think they can trust the government’s appraiser or because they don’t want to seem like a troublemaker. That can be a costly mistake! You should almost always get your own appraisal to make sure you get a fair price. Make sure the appraiser has experience doing eminent domain appraisals and understands Colorado eminent domain law, otherwise the government may refuse to reimburse you for the appraisal. Contact an appraiser as soon as you get a notice from the government that they intend to acquire your property.

4 – Consider Legal Help
Consider contacting a lawyer to help you. A lawyer familiar with Colorado’s eminent domain laws can help you feel less intimidated by the government. Make sure your lawyer has actual experience with Colorado eminent domain cases. Colorado has complex eminent domain laws and regulations. Your lawyer can help you with every phase of the eminent domain process in Colorado including finding an appraiser, trying to settle your case for a fair price, and representing you in any condemnation proceedings.