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Kansas Eminent Domain Laws

Kansas eminent domain laws can be found in chapter 26 of Kansas statutes.  Pursuant to K.S.A. § 26-101, any corporation, having the right of eminent domain and any partnership holding a certificate of convenience issued by the state corporation commission and having the right of eminent domain, shall exercise such right in the manner set forth in K.S.A. 26-501 to 26-516.  The eminent domain proceedings shall be brought by filing a verified petition in the district court of the county in which the real estate is situated, except if it be an entire tract situated in two or more counties, the proceedings may be brought in any county in which any tract or parts thereof is situated[i].  A petition verified by an affidavit shall include (1) the authority for and the purpose of the taking; (2) a description of each lot, parcel, or tract of land and the nature of the interest to be taken; (3) the name of any owner and all lienholders of record and the name of any party in possession[ii].  If the judge finds that the plaintiff has the right to exercise eminent domain, the judge shall appoint three appraisers to appraise the value of the lots and parcels of land found to be necessary, and to determine the damages and compensation to the interested parties resulting from the taking[iii].  The appraisers shall report in the office of the clerk of the district court and notify the condemner of such filing[iv].

Pursuant to K.S.A. § 26-507, if the plaintiff desires to continue with the proceeding, within 30 days from the time the appraisers’ report is filed, shall pay to the clerk of the district court the amount of the appraisers’ award and court costs accrued to date, including appraisers’ fees.  Upon such payment being made, the title, easement, or interest appropriated in the land condemned shall thereupon immediately vest in the plaintiff and it shall be entitled to the immediate possession of the land.  If the plaintiff does not make the payment within 30 days from the time the appraisers’ report is filed, the condemnation is abandoned as to those tracts, and judgment for costs including the appraisers’ fees together with judgment in favor of the defendant for the reasonable expenses incurred in defense of the action shall be entered against the plaintiff.  After such payment is made by the plaintiff to the clerk of the court, the proceedings as to those tracts for which payment has been made can only be abandoned by the mutual consent of the plaintiff and the parties interested in the award[v].

If either party is dissatisfied with the award of the appraisers, such party, within 30 days after the filing of the appraisers’ report, may appeal from the award by filing a written notice of appeal with the clerk of the district court[vi].  When there is a dispute among the parties in interest as to the division of the amount of the appraisers’ award or the amount of the final judgment, the district court shall, upon motion by any such party in interest, determine the final distribution of the amount of the appraisers’ award or the amount of the final judgment[vii].

[i] K.S.A. § 26-501.

[ii] K.S.A. § 26-502.

[iii] K.S.A. § 26-504.

[iv] K.S.A. § 26-505.

[v] K.S.A. § 26-507.

[vi] K.S.A. § 26-508.

[vii] K.S.A. § 26-517

Inside Kansas Eminent Domain Laws