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Land Compensation

Every year millions of pounds are spent by local authorities, government departments, statutory utilities and railway companies on land acquired by compulsory purchase for town centre schemes, transport, housing and general infrastructure projects. Bute Surveyors have extensive experience of representing both acquiring authorities and claimants affected by compulsory purchase orders (CPO).

Compulsory purchase schemes can be very stressful and emotional times for individual claimants and small businesses affected by these proposals. Bute Surveyors are able, if appropriate, to make credible objections to CPOs and appear at Public Enquiries. Due to our knowledge of the property market we are able to present a compensation claim within the statutory framework in a persuasive way, and hopefully negotiate a satisfactory settlement. Where negotiations fail, Bute Surveyors have the ability to provide expert evidence to the Upper Chamber (Lands Chamber).

Statute also provides for compensation to be paid, in certain circumstances, where no land is actually taken for the acquiring authority’s scheme, under the Land Compensation Act 1973 Part 1. Bute Surveyors have acted on behalf of individual claimants throughout Wales in prosecuting Part 1 claims, and have also defended claims on behalf of indemnifying developers across England and Wales.

Due to our knowledge and experience Mr Andrew M Lewis has also been appointed by the President of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors as arbitrator on a dispute concerning land compensation claims involving more than 150 individual claimants and properties.


LAND COMPENSATION ACT 1973 PART 1

Claims under this legislation can be brought by owners of residential property against the relevant statutory authority if they were the owner of the property when a new or adjusted highway was first used. The compensation is for loss in value to the home arising from the physical factors emanating from the traffic using the new/adjusted highway. This legislation also applies to railways or runways/aprons at an airport. These physical factors are defined in statute as noise, dust, fumes, smells, vibration, and artificial lighting. The actual nuisance suffered from building the new road is not an issue which allows for the payment of compensation under the above statute.

Bute Surveyors will prepare the necessary claim form on behalf of clients and handle all the negotiations. Our fees for this element of work will be met entirely by the compensating authority, and clients do not loose any of their compensation by instructing us to represent them in negotiating their claim.

We have found that the claims under the Land Compensation Act 1973 Part 1, do become protracted, and whilst Bute Surveyors make every effort to progress claims, there is usually a delay in any payment being made to clients.

If a property is let, the landlord has the right to submit the claim, subject to certain criteria being met. Tenants do not have a right to compensation under this legislation.

A frequent question of most clients is “how much will I receive as compensation?” As will be appreciated, each property is individually considered, and therefore no definite answer is possible without our first inspecting the property and ascertaining how badly affected it is from the new/adjusted highway.

Developers who have provided indemnities to public bodies have also employed the services of Bute Surveyors across the UK. Our services consider the merits of each claim, and we advise our clients on the appropriate levels of compensation that should be paid.


COMPULSORY PURCHASE COMPENSATION

The amount of compensation claimants received is the subject of negotiation, and if this fails, determination by the Upper Chamber (Lands Chamber). However, certain statutory rules have been laid down which give guidance to all parties affected by such proposals. These rules apply whether the compulsory purchase is for a new or adjusted highway or railway line, new school or other public building or development. Bute Surveyors have experience in these sectors and can provide clients will personal quality involvement of Chartered Surveyors throughout the process.

Similarly, where a blight notice or purchase notice has been served by a claimant on a local or public body, Bute Surveyors can provide relevant quality advice. We can also assist in the provision of advice relating to Home Loss Payments, Basic and Occupiers Loss Payments, and consider whether hope value is a factor in the compensation claim.

Claimants also have available to them the possibility of obtaining an advance payment of compensation, and we discuss with clients the benefit of this opportunity, to ensure they maximise the possibilities afforded by their compulsory acquisition.

We have also represented clients affected by the Places of Worship (Enfranchisement) Act 1920, where the premises are held on a long lease.


ENVIRONMENTAL COMPENSATION

Bute Surveyors have acted on behalf of claimants where their properties are being affected by works to be undertaken by Natural Resources Wales or the Environment Agency (or their contractors). Our fees for preparing and negotiating claims are met in full by Natural Resources Wales or the Environment Agency, and claimants do not loose any compensation by instructing us, but gain from having quality specialist professional representation.
Our work could include:-

  1. Checking of pre-scheme inspection reports prepared by Natural Resources Wales/Environment Agency.
  2. Liaising with the NRW/EAs contractor to minimise the nuisance of the works.
  3. Coordination of other professional, e.g. structural engineers where damage has been sustained to a property.
  4. Preparation and negotiation of claim against Natural Resources Wales/Environment Agency.

Our goal is to make the inevitable inconvenience arising from the works as little as possible, and to maximise the compensation rights of our clients, within the parameters of the statutory compensation code.