Compulsory Purchase Orders are used by State Agencies to acquire land to enable the development of critical infrastructure projects for the common good. As suggested in the name, the acquisition is compulsory so landowners are obliged to transfer ownership to the acquiring authority. Consent of the landowner is not required. Landowners affected by a CPO are entitled to be compensated for the land taken and may, depending on the specific case, be entitled to additional compensation for the impact of the CPO on any retained lands (Severance) and for any reasonable costs incurred as a result of the CPO (Disturbance). Compensation is assessed on the principle of equivalence i.e. the landowner is placed in the same position after the Compulsory Purchase of their lands, in so far as money can do it, to that which they were in before the CPO.
The current compulsory purchase system, with the public enquiries, notices to treat, notices of entry, etc. can be challenging for individual land owners. Power Property have a team of Surveyors dedicated to ensuring that, if you are affected by a CPO, you will receive clear, simple professional advice which can help to ensure you receive fair compensation. However, you should also be aware that affected landowners should not be out of pocket by seeking and receiving such professional advice as professional fees are usually indemnified and paid by the purchasing authority.
The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) has a useful information booklet available here which provides general information on CPO but the main steps in the CPO process are summarised below:
- A statutory body decides to make a CPO.
- Affected parties will be served with a notice and newspaper notices will be published, compulsory purchase order stating that the Order is about to be put on public display and submitted to An Bord Pleanála for confirmation.
- Objections can be made, but valid objections are generally on planning or legal grounds only.
- A Public Local Enquiry is held at which affected parties can formally put their views forward (If no objections are made An Bord Pleanála can confirm, amend or reject the CPO without a Public Enquiry).
- An Bord Pleanála either confirms, amends or rejects CPO order and publishes details of the decisions in this regard.
- After expiry of objection period, the CPO is operative.
- Acquiring Authority serves Notice to Treat on the affected parties and discussions commence regarding the level of compensation available.
- The affected party lodges a claim for compensation. This can be made by the claimants’ valuer.
- On reaching agreement, compensation is paid, otherwise the matter may be referred by either party to the Property Arbitrator to assess compensation.
- Acquisition is finalised, compensation paid.
Power Property has been providing professional advice on CPO issues for the past 25 years and has worked on a large number of major infrastructural projects for claimants affected by schemes such as motorways, ports, railways, regional roads, wayleaves, etc.
For independent impartial advice on any CPO matter or for assistance with completing your claim for compensation, contact Power Property today.