is the formal act of a governmental entity exercising its power of
eminent domain, or its "taking" authority.
is an inherent and essential attribute or
prerogative of sovereignty (government). Private property is held
subject to the control of the sovereign power of the state, exercised
through the legislature, for public uses. United States v. Federal Land Bank
, 127 F.2d 505 (8th Cir. 1942). This power is
restricted by the
United States Constitution and the Minnesota Constitution. The
Amendment to the United States Constitution
“...nor shall private property be taken for public use without just
U.S. Const. Amend. V
In certain ways mirroring this authority,
while, perhaps, inherently providing more protection to landowners, the
“Private property shall not be taken, destroyed,
or damaged for public use without just compensation therefor, first paid or secured
Minn. Const. Art. I, Sec. 13
Arguably, the Fifth Amendment does not specifically authorize the power
of eminent domain, yet it alludes to a recognition that a
pre-existing power is authorized to take private property for public use.
United States v. Carmack, 329 U.S. 230, 241-42 (1946)
+ What constitutes a
"taking" of private property?
What is a "regulatory taking" and "inverse condemnation"?
A quick look at a "quick-take" action.
"Minimum Compensation" - Eminent Domain Legislative Reform 2006.
Minnesota's Eminent Domain Statutes
Is it always necessary to hire a MN condemnation attorney?
Additional information on condemnation and eminent domain in Minnesota.
What constitutes a "taking" of private property?
Any time private property is possessed or occupied by the
government, there exists a “taking” of the property as defined by the
constitution. Physical possession or occupation will constitute a
taking “no matter how minute the intrusion, and no matter how weighty
the public purpose behind it...”
South Carolina Coastal Council, 505 U.S. 1003 (1992)
What is a "regulatory taking" and "inverse condemnation"?
be noted that a "taking" can also occur by intrusive legislative
regulations to property. While the government can regulate land use to
some extent, if it goes too far, it may be deemed as a taking (aptly
named a "regulatory taking
") in which the
landowner is entitled to just compensation. A landowner whose property
has been taken by legislation or zoning changes typically starts an
action to compel the
government to begin eminent domain proceedings and compensate the
owner. A compensable regulatory taking may be temporary or permanent.
First English Evangelical Lutheran Church v. County of Los Angeles, 482
U.S. 304 (1987)
. A quick look at a
A "quick take
action is a procedure used by the condemnor to expedite the private property
taking. Generally, this consists of the condemning authority depositing
with the district court the good faith estimate of value of the
condemned land. The condemning authority then becomes the owner of the
property. A subsequent proceeding occurs to determine just
compensation for the landowner of the condemned property.
"Minimum Compensation" - Eminent Domain
Legislative Reform 2006.
As part of Minnesota's eminent domain
reform in 2006, the Minnesota State Legislature adopted a new statute
requiring minimum compensation as damages
for property owners forced to relocate as a result of eminent domain.
The statute, in its entirety, reads:
Minn. Stat. § 117.187 - MINIMUM COMPENSATION.
owner must relocate, the amount of damages payable, at a minimum, must
be sufficient for an owner to purchase a comparable property in the
community and not less than the condemning authority's payment or
deposit under section
, to the extent that the damages will not be duplicated in
the compensation otherwise awarded to the owner of the property. For the
purposes of this section, "owner" is defined as the person or entity
that holds fee title to the property."
As welcoming as the
minimum compensation idea sounds, it is a relatively new law, which in
turn raises many questions. Who really is an owner? Does the
owner have to physically occupy the property? What is considered a
comparable property in the community? Moreover, who defines what
"community" means to the owner?
Nonetheless, this statute
a progressive step, advantageous to
all landowners. Whether through legislation or case law precedent,
any questions raised by the new minimum compensation statute will likely
become clearer in the coming years.
Eminent Domain Statutes
Eminent domain and condemnation in
Minnesota are generally governed by
Minnesota Statutes Ch. 117.
Is it always necessary to hire a MN
A Minnesota condemnation attorney can assist you with
the process and help you obtain just compensation for the taking of your
property. You may be entitled to reimbursement for an appraisal of the
property being condemned by the government, as well. An experienced
condemnation attorney can explain your rights to you when
it comes to your property and eminent domain. Typically, our fees
for representation in condemnation matters are based on a contingency
fee arrangement. We will detail our fee arrangement and estimated costs
prior to representation.
Trusted, experienced Minnesota condemnation attorneys.
attorneys have over 45 years of combined experience. Since 1975
firm has been committed to
providing the highest level of
legal representation to our
At Taurinskas Law Firm, we treat
our client's with courtesy and
integrity. We provide
efficient and honest legal
representation that achieves
We offer the experience and
resources of a large firm while at the same time providing our clients
with the convenience
typical of a small firm.
Our attorneys have a convincing background of real
estate experience. Attorney Jim Taurinskas has served many years as a
condemnation commissioner and attorney Brian Taurinskas is a Certified
Real Property Law Specialists (Minnesota State Bar Association). Both
attorneys are also licensed real estate brokers. We estimate that more than 90 percent of our clientele is the result of
repeat clients or referrals from clients.
truly appreciate these referrals and
will make every effort to ensure these positive referrals continue with you
If your property is condemned, you have certain statutory and
constitutional protections and rights. At Taurinskas Law Firm, we'll
assist you with understanding your rights in the condemnation proceeding.
Our attorneys will fight, on your behalf, to ensure you receive the
compensation you deserve for any property taking. Our office can assist you with any
eminent domain or condemnation issues or questions you may have in
Minnesota or Wisconsin. Our office is located in northern Dakota County
in South St. Paul, MN. We provide a
free initial consultation for condemnation matters so that you can
determine whether we are a suitable fit for you and your legal matters.
Please Note: This site contains general information and not legal advice. It is based on Minnesota law in effect at the time of writing. An
experienced Minnesota condemnation lawyer can advise you about how the law applies to your specific situation.
on Minnesota Condemnation and Eminent Domain may be found at: