This article discusses what rights you have in Queensland in regards to compulsory land acquisition. We cover a variety of questions and topics, including:
- Your rights in a compulsory land acquisition.
- Why local government/council can resume land.
- Whether I still own my land after receiving a notice of intention.
- Whether you can dispute the resumption of land.
- The requirements for disputing resumption of land.
- At what point you would stop owning the land.
- The types of people that may enter your property in the lead up to resumption.
- The length of time you can stay on your property.
- The amount of land taken.
- Compensation – how it will be calculated and offered.
- Does it cost anything to engage a lawyer for compulsory land acquisition?
What are my rights?
As a landowner, you have the right to dispute the compulsory land acquisition/resumption and receive fair and reasonable compensation for any land being acquired.
Why can the government/local council resume my land?
In Queensland, the State Development and Public Works Organisation Act 1971 and Acquisition of Land Act 1967 allow state and local governments to take privately held land for public works and public purposes, such as roads, railways, schools and parks.
Do I still own my land if I receive a notice?
Yes, even though you have received notice of intention to resume, you are still the legal owner of the land.
Is there anything that can stop me from disputing the resumption?
The only thing that could stop you is if there is a critical infrastructure easement over the property. There are no rights to object to the resumption in these situations.
What are the requirements for disputing a resumption?
The objection must be accurately prepared and submitted in time. Applications are made in writing within 30 days of the Notice of Intention to Resume and include the basis of your dispute.
When do I stop owning the land?
You stop owning the land once the resumption notice has been published (in the Queensland Government Gazette).
Is it true people can enter my property before the resumption?
Yes. Authorised persons, such as surveyors and valuers, can enter your property prior to the resumption to inspect and conduct any tests. Prior notice will be provided.
How long can I stay in my property?
You will be required to vacate the property as advised. This will take place once the resumption notice has been published and ownership has been transferred. There may be situations where you can stay at the property for a range of time after the publication date, for example, on a landholder agreement or lease.
Will I be compensated for having to start again somewhere different?
You will be compensated for the purchase of a similar, replacement property, reasonable removal and storage costs and utilities and services re-connection costs.
How much land will be taken?
The amount of land resumed will be dependent on the government/local council’s requirements for their works. The notification will set out exactly what land is subject to the resumption.
How will the compensation offer be determined?
The compensation offer is based on:
- land value at time of resumption notice publication,
- in accordance with the Act,
- previous decisions in the Land Court of Queensland.
There will be instances where you can be compensated for disturbance costs.
What are disturbance costs?
Disturbance costs include:
- legal fees,
- replacement property purchase costs,
- removal and storage costs,
- utilities and services re-connections costs,
- directly-related business losses, and
- other costs.
Does it cost anything to engage a lawyer?
Legal fees are deferred and paid as part of your compensation payout, which means no out-of-pocket expenses throughout the duration of your case. The government body will pay a capped amount toward your legal costs.
How We Can Help
We assist landowners with preparing and submitting compensation claim information, including valuation and disturbance issues and representation in all negotiations with relevant government authorities. We also provide expert representation in all negotiations and court proceedings to get clients their fair share. Whether your case settles out-of-court or it is a fight to the end, our expert team will work to get the best possible outcome for you.
As one of our satisfied clients said, “Invest in the best.”.
We are available to meet with you at any of our local offices (Brisbane, Gold Coast, Beenleigh, Cleveland and Jimboomba) or by telephone or video conference.
This article was originally published on the 20th of November 2020. It was updated on the 14th of May 2022.
This article is for your information and interest only. It is not intended to be comprehensive, and it does not constitute and must not be relied on as legal advice. You must seek specific advice tailored to your circumstances.