The question of whether the exercise of eminent domain can be stopped usually depends on one major question. The question is whether the exercise of eminent domain is for a legitimate public purpose. If the government or any other private entity tries to exercise eminent domain without a legitimate public purpose, then the exercise of eminent domain would not be constitutional and therefore could be stopped.
Remember, the authority that is attempting to exercise eminent domain must meet the basic two-pronged requirement set forth in both the United States Constitution and the North Carolina Constitution. First, as mentioned before, the entity that is trying to exercise eminent domain must have a legitimate public purpose. Second, the entity that is attempting to exercise eminent domain must also give “just compensation” before they can finalize the taking.
There may be other grounds that exist with your particular property that could stop an eminent domain taking. These issues typically will revolve around environmental problems that might present themselves at a given property. Environmental issues that often arise might involve the presence of an endangered species of plant or animal that exist on the property threatened with eminent domain.
Another way that might serve to stop an eminent domain taking could revolve around the condemning authority’s failure to follow proper administrative procedures. It is pivotal that you consult an eminent domain attorney to evaluate your case to see if this issue might actually be an avenue to stop the taking. However, even if this avenue presents itself, it is still unlikely that you can stop the exercise of eminent domain. Instead, you might only delay the taking until the procedural issue is resolved.
The central issue that most eminent domain cases revolve around is whether “just compensation” is being offered to the landowner for their property. Typically, this involves getting an appraisal and arguing over the proper value of the property. However, the possibility of stopping an exercise of eminent domain does exist.