What is a Compulsory Purchase Order?

compulsory purchase meaning

What is Compulsory Purchase?

A Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) is a legal function that allows certain bodies which need to obtain land or property to do so without the consent of the owner. Major national projects such as HS2, Crossrail 2, East West Rail Link, as well as urban regeneration projects rely on being able to use these powers to upgrade the UK’s infrastructure and cities. We assist business owners, occupiers and acquiring authorities negotiate compensation claims following compulsory purchase.

 

How can we help you with compulsory purchase compensation?

We are leading CPO practitioners, having advised on over 50 compensation claims, particularly for business premises including relocation and extinguishment cases.

 

Our clients have included acquiring bodies, affected businesses and developers. We have been instructed on many claims arising from major infrastructure projects such as the London 2012 Olympics, Crossrail and Thameslink, as well as numerous town centre and regeneration schemes around the country. While most of our cases settled by negotiations, in two leading reported cases decided by the Lands Tribunal we have used our expertise to present reports on the compensation due and give oral evidence (see below).

 

The team has considerable experience of calculating the compensation due for the:

  • Value of the business on total and partial extinguishment
  • Injurious affection – loss on retained property
  • Lost profits through business interruption
  • Lost profits through business relocation or extinguishment
  • Relocation costs
  • Businesses unable to develop as originally planned
  • Wasted management time incurred
  • Additional labour costs, overtime and redundancy costs
  • Disruption through blight
  • Additional operating costs incurred and continuing
  • Move and build costs incurred
  • Risks of delays in relocating
  • Professional fees arising from the compulsory purchase

The majority of CPO extinguishment claims for business assets arise because the:

  • owners have reached an eligible age
  • business cannot be relocate so the business needs to be extinguished; or
  • business can relocate but the business suffers partial extinguishment as a result.

In any of these cases the owners are generally entitled to claim compensation for their losses.  We can work with lawyers and surveyors to quantify compensation claims either for the owners or the acquiring authority. It is worth noting that our professional fees are usually paid by the acquiring authority in addition to the compensation received. Further articles and technical details are available from the Compulsory Purchase Association’s website.


Why you will need our help

Compensation is payable following compulsory purchase of land and businesses

Major UK infrastructure projects require compensation for compulsory purchase of land and businesses

The process of relocating a business is inherently complex, stressful and fraught with risk. The process will have many stages and usually takes many years between the initial proposal and the compulsory purchase taking effect. For example, where there is the possibility of relocation there is often a disparity between what the claimant and the acquiring authority consider are suitable alternative premises. There is often a difference of opinion on the compensation due between the claimant and the acquiring authority. One individual decided to write a book (Lance Forman on Forman’s Games) about his experience of compulsory purchase and we organised a seminar for leading practitioners in this field to hear his views on how the process could be improved (read his fascinating story here).


Drawing on our contentious business valuation expertise we are often asked to value businesses on the principles established by statute and case law for this type of compensation. A business may start to see the impact of an impending CPO many months before the vesting date. Again we can use our expertise to quantify pre-possession losses. We can help quantify these compensation claims, either for the owners or the acquiring authority.


Our founder, Charles Lazarevic, has given expert evidence in two leading cases before the Lands Tribunal (Contraband and Welcocks Skips). He is an active member of the Compulsory Purchase Association, which provides training and support to leading practitioners in this field, and was co-opted onto the Board in 2010-2012.


Want to learn more about our experience and services in the field of Compulsory Purchase Orders and Compensation?

Click here to see details of our reported compulsory purchase cases.

 

Click here to see testimonials from clients.

 

To contact our specialist team today, please click here.