TITLE 26 EMINENT DOMAIN (Pa.C.S.A.)

CHAPTER 7 JUST COMPENSATION AND MEASURE OF DAMAGES

 

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26 Pa.C.S.A. 701 Just compensation; other damages.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 702 Measure of damages.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 703 Fair market value.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 704 Effect of imminence of condemnation.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 705 Contiguous tracts and unity of use.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 706 Effect of condemnation use on after value.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 707 Removal of machinery, equipment or fixtures.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 708 Expenses incidental to transfer of title.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 709 Condemnee's costs where no declaration of taking filed.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 710 Limited reimbursement of appraisal, attorney and engineering fees.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 711 Payment on account of increased mortgage costs.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 712 Loss of rentals because of imminence of condemnation.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 713 Delay compensation.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 714 Consequential damages.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 715 Damages for vacation of roads.

26 Pa.C.S.A. 716 Attempted avoidance of monetary just compensation.

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26 Pa.C.S.A.  701 Just compensation; other damages.
 
 A condemnee shall be entitled to just compensation for the taking,
injury or destruction of the condemnee's property, determined as set
forth in this chapter. Other damages shall also be paid or awarded as
provided in this title.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  702 Measure of damages.
 
 (a) Just compensation.  Just compensation shall consist of the
difference between the fair market value of the condemnee's entire
property interest immediately before the condemnation and as unaffected by
the condemnation and the fair market value of the property interest
remaining immediately after the condemnation and as affected by the
condemnation.
 
 (b) Urban development or redevelopment condemnation.  In the case of
the condemnation of property in connection with any urban development or
redevelopment project, which property is damaged by subsidence due to
failure of surface support resulting from the existence of mine tunnels
or passageways under the property or by reason of fires occurring in mine
tunnels or passageways or of burning coal refuse banks, the damage
resulting from the subsidence or underground fires or burning coal refuse
banks shall be excluded in determining the fair market value of the
condemnee's entire property interest immediately before the
condemnation.
 
 (c) Value of property damaged by natural disaster. 
 
 (1) In the case of the condemnation of property in connection with any
program or project which property is damaged by any natural disaster, the
damage resulting from the natural disaster shall be excluded in
determining fair market value of the condemnee's entire property interest
immediately before the condemnation.
 
 (2) This subsection applies only where the damage resulting from the
natural disaster has occurred within five years prior to the initiation
of negotiations for or notice of intent to acquire or order to vacate the
property and during the ownership of the property by the condemnee. The
damage to be excluded shall include only actual physical damage to the
property for which the condemnee has not received any compensation or
reimbursement.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  703 Fair market value.
 
 Fair market value shall be the price which would be agreed to by a
willing and informed seller and buyer, taking into consideration but not
limited to the following factors:
 
 (1) The present use of the property and its value for that use.
 
 (2) The highest and best reasonably available use of the property and
its value for that use.
 
 (3) The machinery, equipment and fixtures forming part of the real
estate taken.
 
 (4) Other factors as to which evidence may be offered as provided by
Chapter 11 (relating to evidence).
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  704 Effect of imminence of condemnation.
 
 Any change in the fair market value prior to the date of condemnation
which the condemnor or condemnee establishes was substantially due to the
general knowledge of the imminence of condemnation, other than that due
to physical deterioration of the property within the reasonable control
of the condemnee, shall be disregarded in determining fair market value.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  705 Contiguous tracts and unity of use.
 
 Where all or a part of several contiguous tracts in substantially
identical ownership is condemned or a part of several noncontiguous
tracts in substantially identical ownership which are used together for a
unified purpose is condemned, damages shall be assessed as if the tracts
were one parcel.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  706 Effect of condemnation use on after value.
 
 (a) General rule.  In determining the fair market value of the
remaining property after a partial taking, consideration shall be given
to the use to which the property condemned is to be put and the damages
or benefits specially affecting the remaining property due to its
proximity to the improvement for which the property was taken.
 
 (b) Future damages and general benefits.  Future damages and general
benefits which will affect the entire community beyond the properties
directly abutting the property taken shall not be considered in arriving
at the after value.
 
 (c) Special benefits.  Special benefits to the remaining property
shall in no event exceed the total damages, except in cases where the
condemnor is authorized under existing law to make special assessments
for benefits.
 
 (d) Partial taking.  A partial taking shall not extinguish a
nonconforming use unless all or a substantial portion of the improvements
on the property are within the area of the property taken.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  707 Removal of machinery, equipment or fixtures.
 
 (a) Notice to condemnee.  In the event the condemnor does not require
for its use machinery, equipment or fixtures forming part of the real
estate, it shall so notify the condemnee.
 
 (b) Condemnee election. 
 
 (1) The condemnee may within 30 days of the notice elect to remove the
machinery, equipment or fixtures unless the time is extended by the
condemnor.
 
 (2) If the condemnee so elects, the damages shall be reduced by the
fair market value of the machinery, equipment or fixtures severed from
the real estate.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  708 Expenses incidental to transfer of title.
 
 An acquiring agency shall, on the date of payment of the purchase price
of amicably acquired real property or of payment or tender of estimated
just compensation in a condemnation proceeding to acquire real property,
whichever is earlier or as soon as is practicable, reimburse the owner
for expenses necessarily incurred for:
 
 (1) Recording fees, transfer taxes and similar expenses incidental to
conveying the real property to the acquiring agency.
 
 (2) Penalty costs for prepayment for any preexisting recorded mortgage
entered into in good faith encumbering the real property.
 
 (3) The pro rata portion of real property taxes paid which are
allocable to a period subsequent to the date of vesting title in the
acquiring agency or the effective date of possession of the real property
by the acquiring agency, whichever is earlier.
 
 (4) The pro rata portion of water and sewer charges paid to a taxing
entity or a local authority allocable to a period subsequent to the
effective date of possession of the real property by the acquiring
agency.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  709 Condemnee's costs where no declaration of taking
filed.
 
 Where proceedings are instituted by a condemnee under section 502(c)
(relating to petition for appointment of viewers), a judgment awarding
compensation to the condemnee for the taking of property shall include
reimbursement of reasonable appraisal, attorney and engineering fees and
other costs and expenses actually incurred.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  710 Limited reimbursement of appraisal, attorney and
engineering fees.
 
 (a) General rule.  The owner of any right, title or interest in real
property acquired or injured by an acquiring agency, who is not eligible
for reimbursement of fees under section 306(g) (relating to preliminary
objections), 308(d) (relating to revocation of condemnation proceedings)
or 709 (relating to condemnee's costs where no declaration of taking
filed), shall be reimbursed in an amount not to exceed $4,000 as a
payment toward reasonable expenses actually incurred for appraisal,
attorney and engineering fees.
 
 (b) Attorney fees.  In determining reasonable attorney fees under
sections 306(g), 308(d), 709 and this section, the court shall consider
all of the circumstances of the case, including, but not limited to, time
records if available.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  711 Payment on account of increased mortgage costs.
 
 (a) Reimbursement of owner.  Whenever the acquisition of property by
an acquiring agency results in the termination of an installment purchase
contract, mortgage or other evidence of debt on the acquired property,
requiring the legal or equitable owner to enter into another installment
purchase contract, mortgage or other evidence of debt on the property
purchased for the same use as the acquired property, a legal or equitable
owner who does not qualify for a payment under section 903(a)(2)
(relating to replacement housing for homeowners) shall be compensated for
any increased interest and other debt service costs which the owner is
required to pay for financing the acquisition of the replacement
property.
 
 (b) Determination of amount. 
 
 (1) Compensation for any increased interest and other debt service
costs shall be equal to the excess in the aggregate interest and other
debt service costs of that amount on the principal of the installment
purchase contract, mortgage or other evidence of debt on the replacement
property which is equal to the unpaid balance of the installment purchase
contract, mortgage or other evidence of debt on the acquired property
over the remaining term of the installment purchase contract, mortgage or
other evidence of debt on the acquired property reduced to present
worth.
 
 (2) The discount rate to be used in reducing to present worth shall be
the prevailing interest rate paid on savings deposits by commercial banks
in the general area in which the replacement property is located.
 
 (3) The amount shall be paid only if the acquired property was subject
to an installment purchase contract or encumbered by a bona fide mortgage
or other evidence of debt secured by the property which was a valid lien
on the property for not less than 180 days prior to the initiation of
negotiations for the acquisition of the property.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  712 Loss of rentals because of imminence of condemnation.
 
 (a) General rule.  A property owner shall be entitled to receive as
special damages compensation for any loss suffered prior to the date of
taking caused by a reduction of income from rentals which the property
owner establishes was substantially due to the general knowledge of the
imminence of condemnation, other than that due to physical deterioration
of the property within the reasonable control of the property owner.
 
 (b) Applicability.  This section applies only to losses of rental
income suffered following a 60-day period subsequent to written notice
from the property owner to the acquiring agency that losses of rental
income are being suffered. Claims for special damages under this section
may be made by any property owner whose property is or was scheduled for
condemnation, whether or not a condemnation subsequently occurs. Total
damages under this section shall not exceed $30,000.
 
 (c) Limited applicability.  Claims for special damages compensation as
described in subsection (a) may be made by any property owner against any
acquiring agency whether or not a condemnation subsequently occurs for
any project related to a convention center in a city of the first class.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  713 Delay compensation.
 
 (a) General rule.  Compensation for delay in payment shall be paid at
an annual rate equal to the prime rate as listed in the first edition of
the Wall Street Journal published in the year, plus 1%, not compounded,
from:
 
 (1) the date of relinquishment of possession of the condemned property
by the condemnee; or
 
 (2) if possession is not required to effectuate condemnation, the date
of condemnation.
 
 (b) Exclusion. 
 
 (1) No compensation for delay shall be payable with respect to funds
paid on account or by deposit in court after the date of the payment or
deposit.
 
 (2) During the period the condemnee remains in possession after the
condemnation:
 
 (i) the condemnee shall not be entitled to compensation for delay in
payment; and
 
 (ii) the condemnor shall not be entitled to rent or other charges for
use and occupancy of the condemned property by the condemnee.
 
 (c) Award or judgment.  Compensation for delay shall not be included
by the viewers or the court or jury on appeal as part of the award or
verdict but shall, at the time of payment of the award or judgment, be
calculated under subsection (a) and added to the award or judgment. There
shall be no further or additional payment of interest on the award or
verdict.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].
 
26 Pa.C.S.A.  714 Consequential damages.
 
 All condemnors, including the Commonwealth, shall be liable for damages
to property abutting the area of an improvement resulting from change of
grade of a road or highway, permanent interference with access or injury
to surface support, whether or not any property is taken.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  715 Damages for vacation of roads.
 
 Whenever a public road, street or highway is vacated, the affected
owners may recover damages for any injuries sustained, even though no
land is actually taken.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].

 

26 Pa.C.S.A.  716 Attempted avoidance of monetary just compensation.
 
 Where a condemnor attempts to avoid the payment of monetary just
compensation to which the condemnee otherwise would be entitled by use of
a substitute for monetary compensation and the condemnee incurs
expenses, including appraisal, attorney and engineering fees, in securing
an adjudication that the substitute is not adequate, the condemnee shall
be reimbursed by the condemnor for all these expenses incurred.
 
2006, May 4, P.L. 112, No. 34,  1, effective in 120 days [Sept. 1,
2006].