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Journal article

The 2012 metamorphosis of the common law of compulsory acquisition valuation in Australia

8 Sep 2015

Following over a century of development, Australian common law concerning the comparable sales method of valuation for land and property, within the context of compulsory acquisition and rating statutes, had evolved to provide a focus on individual elements within the method but did not provide a clear sequential process. However, three decisions of the NSW Land and Environment Court in 2012, which are described and critically analysed in this paper, formed a metamorphosis of the common law by clearly setting out the legal principles of the comparable sales method of valuation while leaving the valuation practice to expert witness valuers. With relatively little research undertaken into the legal aspects of the valuation of land and property, this paper forms an original contribution to the literature through the critical analysis and discussion of recent court decisions. Given the significant imminent development of major infrastructure projects in Australia, likely to necessitate the extensive compulsory acquisition of land and property, such metamorphosis is contended to be timely and potentially relevant to other common law jurisdictions having similar compulsory acquisition statutory regimes and land and property valuation practices.

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