Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 25.1. Eminent Domain
Chapter 2. Condemnation Procedures
4/15/2021

Article 8. Dismissal of Proceedings.

§ 25.1-248. Dismissal of proceedings prior to trial on issue of just compensation.

If a hearing has not begun in the trial of the issue of just compensation for the taking or damaging of property and the petitioner has not already acquired the title or a lesser interest or estate in, or taken possession of, such property, the petitioner may upon motion obtain, as a matter of right, an order dismissing the proceeding as to such property. Such order shall also provide, except as may be provided otherwise in a settlement by agreement of the parties, that the petitioner shall pay such owner or owners their reasonable expenses that have been actually incurred by them in preparing for the trial on the issue of just compensation, in such amounts as the court deems just and reasonable.

Code 1919, § 4387; 1934, p. 514; Code 1950, § 25-22; 1962, c. 426, § 25-46.34; 1972, c. 742; 2003, c. 940.

§ 25.1-249. Dismissal of proceedings after commencement of trial on issue of just compensation.

At any time after a hearing has begun in the trial of the issue of just compensation for the taking or damaging of any property or property interest, if the petitioner has not already acquired title or a lesser interest in, or taken possession of, such property, or paid the amount of just compensation into court, and before the time for noting an appeal from any final order upon a report of just compensation, the petitioner may, upon motion, obtain as a matter of right an order dismissing the proceedings as to such property. Such order shall also provide that the petitioner shall pay such owner or owners for the following expenses that have been actually incurred by them in such amounts as the court deems just and reasonable: (i) an attorney's fee; (ii) witness fees, including reasonable fees of not more than three expert witnesses; and (iii) other reasonable expenses and compensation for time spent as a result of the condemnation proceedings. If any such expenses are not paid within 30 days of the entry of such order, judgment therefor shall be entered against the petitioner.

Code 1919, § 4387; 1934, p. 514; Code 1950, § 25-22; 1962, c. 426, § 25-46.34; 1972, c. 742; 2003, c. 940.

§ 25.1-250. Effect of failure of petitioner to pay award; expenses.

If the petitioner fails to pay to the parties entitled thereto, or into court, the amount of the award of just compensation before the time for noting an appeal from any final order upon the report of just compensation, the owner or owners of the property to be taken or damaged may, upon motion, obtain as a matter of right an order dismissing the proceeding as to such property. Such order shall also provide that the petitioner shall pay such owner or owners his expenses as provided in § 25.1-249. If any such expenses are not paid within 30 days of the entry of such order, judgment therefor shall be entered against the petitioner.

Code 1919, § 4387; 1934, p. 514; Code 1950, § 25-22; 1962, c. 426, § 25-46.34; 1972, c. 742; 2003, c. 940.

§ 25.1-251. Dismissal of proceedings by stipulation of parties; effect of dismissal; dropping parties.

A. Before the vesting of title, or a lesser interest therein in any property in the manner prescribed in this chapter, the proceedings may be dismissed, in whole or in part, as to any such property upon the filing of a stipulation of dismissal by the parties affected thereby. If such parties so stipulate, the court may vacate any order that has been entered.

B. Except as otherwise provided in a stipulation of dismissal or order of the court, any dismissal is without prejudice.

C. The court may at any time drop a defendant unnecessarily or improperly joined.

Code 1919, § 4387; 1934, p. 514; Code 1950, § 25-22; 1962, c. 426, § 25-46.34; 1972, c. 742; 2003, c. 940.