Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) – Specialist Conveyancing Solicitors

04/11/2019
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2 min read
A Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) allows a public body to force you to sell your home if it obstructs a regeneration project or if doing so is ruled to be 'in the public good'. They are generally taken out by local authorities and used when, for example, a new road or interchange is planned and your home lies on the land where the development will take place.

The process can be quite complex and drawn out as it involves consultations and you have to be allowed to lodge objections. However the good news is that the authority involved must normally compensate you. You can be compensated for, among other things:
  • the value of the property;
  • the cost of acquiring and moving to a new property; and
  • the costs of seeking professional advice.
You can therefore look to get your conveyancing costs which accompany your move to a new home refunded.

This article examines:
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    1

    Which laws underpin Compulsory Purchase Orders?

Essentially the main laws in England & Wales which govern the use of Compulsory Purchase Orders are:


    2

    Can you refuse a Compulsory Purchase Order?

Yes you can, however you should bear in mind that the public body serving the CPO would already have been expected to exhaust other options before issuing the notice which, for example, in the case of the construction of a supermarket, would mean the supermarket was expected to carry out private negotiations with you first, among other things.

The challenge you face is that by the time the body has secured a CPO, they would most likely have 'covered all bases' - normally the process includes at least one public consultation - so even though you can opt to take the body to court, you'd need to have legally watertight grounds to have any chance of success.

Current legislation does allow you to be compensated for any payments you make for advice from, for example, to expert surveyors - you're entitled to receive advice of a comparable standard to the public body intending to force the purchase - although the costs have to be reasonable.

You certainly can't object simply because you disagree with CPOs on principle or 'don't like' being forced to move. You should carefully consider any advice you receive from the surveyor you've chosen - who should have expertise in this area - and act accordingly.


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