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Eminent Domain Bethlehem, PA

Eminent Domain Bethlehem, PA

Eminent Domain Bethlehem, PA

When it comes to eminent domain, people often tend to underestimate the power of the government, in relation to how businesses can be affected by them.  In other words, although businesses and companies can have their own scale and sense of power and authority, certain aspects can easily be stripped away, if one underestimates the power of the government.  At the same time though, having private property coveted for public use is not always a bad thing, and it can be put to use, to support business and company growth. Moreover, a lawyer who understands and is experienced with laws regarding eminent domain in Bethlehem, PA such as Hoegan & Associates P.C., is an important asset if you find yourself in this situation. 

What is an eminent domain?


Eminent domain is the power that the United States government, states and municipalities have to take private property for public use. Eminent domain is a right that is granted under the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution, and most common-law nations have similar laws such as expropriation in Canada or compulsory acquisition and Australia, and in the UK, New Zealand and Ireland eminent domain is known as compulsory purchase. So it is a very widely practiced law, albeit it may be done slightly differently depending on the country you are in. For the purposes of this article we are going to be discussing the United States and eminent domain.

Private property is often taken to condemnation proceedings, and this means that the owners can challenge the legality of the seizure and settle the matter at the fair market value which is used by the person to acquire the land in the first place. 

The most common example of condemnation involved land and buildings that have ceased to make way for public projects, such as air space, water, dirt timber and rock that is appropriated from private land for the construction of roads.

Eminent domains can even include leases, stocks and investment funds. In 2013 a lot of municipalities continue to consider using eminent domain to refinance underwater mortgages by seizing them for investors at their current market value and then turning around and selling them at a more reasonable rate. Congress did pass a law that prohibits the federal housing administration from financing mortgages seized by eminent domain as part of the 2015 budget but this is still an issue that could undermine the mortgage market.

An example of why eminent domain can be done with, is due to contract rights, patents copyrights and intellectual property being subject to eminent domain the government could theoretically seize Matt I which was formerly Facebook and turn it into a public utility to protect privacy and data of the people. While this is unlikely, this is a way an eminent domain can be used and is not often thought about. Because usually when you hear eminent domain, you think about the government taking your land.

The definition of what makes up a public project has been expanded by the Supreme Court from highways, trade centers, airport expansions and other utilities to anything that will make us any more visually attractive or revitalize the community that requires revitalization. In the 1980s General Motors took private land for a factory to create jobs and boost tax revenues and they did this under eminent domain.

However there is abuse when it comes to eminent domain, and notorious is Pfizer perceiving the homes of a poor neighborhood in New London Connecticut in 2000. They ceases neighborhoods so that they could build a new research facility, and it was really the first time Americans learned that a city can condemn homes and small businesses to promote private development of a business. The Supreme Court did uphold this ruling however several states passed new laws to protect property owners from the abusive eminent domain elements. Furthermore in this particular example Pfizer did abandon the plans and leave a wasteland behind after displacing dozens of people.

Eminent Domain in Bethlehem, PA


When it comes to eminent domain, the thought of controlling private property, may be unsettling to some people.  However, with assistance from experienced business attorneys, such as Hoegen & Associate, P.C., eminent domain can aid in growth.  The firm not only has years of experience, catering to the residents of Bethlehem, PA, but there are also other assets that they have built upon as well.  Examples of this, include real estate law, tax assessment, construction law, and more.  The reason why this is essential, is because within any business or company, it is important to remember how and why a business or company works the way it does, in relation to eminent domain assistance. 

      Now; what this aids in doing is better assessing how and why eminent domain in Bethlehem PA may or may not be beneficial. When confronted with eminent domain in Bethlehem, PA, residents or business owners should take into consideration how it will affect them directly, indirectly, and others around them. As such, a plan should be set in place that encapsulates how and why eminent domain will be beneficial to a business or company.  

  • What am I trying to achieve, when it comes to my business?
  • How will eminent domain impact my business in a positive way?
  • What are the long term goals of my business, in relation to eminent domain?
  • What are the short term goals?

How would private property being converted to public use allow the company to gain a stronger reputation?

     Eminent domain can be overwhelming because without the proper research or understanding of it, it can inherently be seen as a bad thing.  However, converting private property to public use can help a business’s reputation and worth. At the same time, this can also help, with giving back to the community property that could serve the residents of Bethlehem, PA. The lawyers at  Hoegen & Associates, P.C. will help you navigate the roads of eminent domain if you find yourself in a difficult