Frequently Asked Questions

Compulsory Purchase
and Compensation

What is a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO)?

A CPO is a legal function that allows certain statutory bodies which need to acquire land or property to acquire it by compulsory acquisition to allow public infrastructure projects to go ahead.

How do I know if my land is to be the subject of a CPO?

You will be served with a notice by the acquiring authority and a newspaper notices will also be published locally.

What can I do then?

You can object to the proposed scheme on Environmental, Planning and/or legal grounds and usually a public enquiry is held, where affected parties can have their views heard. The decision of the enquiry will be published sometime later.

If the Minister confirms the CPO, what happens next?

The acquiring authority serves what is known as a “Notice to Treat” to all affected property owners. In effect, this is a notice to the property owner to seek expert property and legal advice in preparation for discussions regarding the acquisition of the property.

At what date is the property valued?

The property is valued at the date of the Notice to Treat.

What can I claim compensation for?

The assessment of compensation will generally fall under certain headings of claim, which can include, but not limited to the following:

• Value of property acquired.
• Severance and Injurious Affection or diminution in value of retained property.
• Disturbance resulting from the scheme.
• Costs resulting from acquisition.
• Professional fees necessary for acquisition.

The acquiring authority normally pays the claimant’s reasonable chartered valuation surveyor’s fees, and the claimant’s reasonable legal fees.

What happens if no agreement is reached on compensation?

Legislation provides for compensation to be resolved through Statutory Arbitration. The Arbitrator is completely independent and must follow the legislation when assessing compensation.

It is important to seek advice from a Valuation Surveyor specialising in CPO early, so that comprehensive preparation of the case can begin.


Should I discuss my business and succession planning with my children?

Absolutely! If you plan to involve your family in your business, they should be included in the planning of this succession to ensure clarity and avoid any ambiguity. You may find that your children’s goals and objectives are different from yours!

Involving family members early and often connects your children to your business and increases their understanding of the business and the commitment required to successfully take over the management of the business.

How should I include key employees in succession planning?

If you have a key employee that shows good leadership skills, can work independently, is experienced and knowledgeable in the business operation, and has expressed a desire to commit long term to the business, this employee may be a candidate to include in your succession planning.

One option is to plan for a gradual buy-out and transfer of ownership as you retire with the key employee assuming more responsibility, authority and ownership.

What makes family business unique?

Family businesses can involve both tremendous opportunities and challenges for those involved. The stakes are often high if either the family or the business fails. The unique challenges of family businesses include:

• Managing the boundaries between family and businesses
• Communication can be more complicated
• Families in business have to consider and plan issues in ways that other families/businesses don’t have to consider.
• Occasionally emotions can run high and if not managed can impact sound business decision-making.

What are the important things to consider in succession planning?

Succession includes both the transfer of ownership and management of the business, therefore the family and business must evaluate carefully the next generation’s ability to take over, as well as planning for the older generation’s financial security.

It is important to:

• Plan early and often
• Consider succession as involving the transfer of both ownership and management responsibilities
• Informal succession involves the life-long preparation for assuming leadership responsibilities while Formal succession happens much quicker and involves the official taking over of administration and management duties.

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