In Queensland, the Acquisition of Land Act 1967 (the Act) enables State or Local Governments or a person authorised by the Act (a constructing authority), to acquire privately owned land for the purposes of economic development to service the community. This can include evolving roads, educational institutions, hospitals, and railways, amongst other requirements. This process is often referred to as compulsory acquisition or resumption of land.
If the constructing authority intends to resume your land, the registered owner will be served with a Notice of Intention of Resume (NIR). The NIR must provide a description of the land to be acquired, the purpose for which the land is being acquired, and the registered owners’ rights to object. In some cases, a registered owner may agree to the resumption and the taking of land will be effective from the date the notice for taking the land is published in the Queensland Government Gazette.
If a registered owner does not agree with the resumption, the NIR can be objected. To object, the registered owner must submit their objections in writing, provide their objections within the specified time frame, being within 30 days after the date of the NIR, and outline the grounds for objecting and whether a hearing before the constructing authority in support of the written objection is required.
If a hearing is required, the registered owner may appear before the constructive authority themselves or instruct a solicitor to appear on their behalf. The objections will be considered and a determination will be made on whether or not to continue with the resumption or to amend the NIR. Should the objection fail and the land is resumed, the registered owner is entitled to seek compensation.
A claim for compensation must be in writing and can be made within 3 years from the day the notice is published in the Queensland Government Gazette. Compensation will be calculated on the market value of the property on the date the notice is published and in accordance with the Act. Compensation may also be available for costs attributable to any disturbance incurred as a result of the resumption, which can include:
- Legal, valuation, or other professional fees;
- Purchase of a replacement property;
- Removal and storage fees;
- Connection to any services or utilities upon relocation;
- Loss of profit or other economic losses resulting from the resumption; or
- Other financial costs that have been, or maybe, reasonably incurred.
Compensation cannot be claimed for emotional distress suffered as a result of the resumption.
If an agreement on the compensation amount cannot be reached and negotiations fail to resolve the issue, then either party can refer the matter to the Land Court of Queensland for an independent assessment.
The blog published by Rostron Carlyle Rojas is intended as general information only and is not legal advice on any subject matter. By viewing the blog posts, the reader understands there is no solicitor-client relationship between the reader and the blog published. The blog should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a legal practitioner, and readers are urged to consult RCR on any legal queries concerning a specific situation.