Civil Jurisdiction of County Courts in Texas
Although the Texas Constitution does not grant the county court jurisdiction over condemnation proceedings, this jurisdiction has been granted by statute. Condemnation, which is sometimes called the power of eminent domain, is the right of a government body or a public utility to take privately owned real estate for public use by paying a reasonable compensation for the condemned property. A Richardson real estate lawyer can assist in such matters. The county judge appoints three disinterested landowners, usually experts familiar with property laws in the area of Richardson where the property is located as condemnation commissions. These commissioners sit to hear evidence from attorneys concerning the fair value of the property. After hearing all of the attorney's evidence, the commissioners make a monetary award that they believe represents the fair value of the property. If a party's lawyers object to the commissioners' award, the question of fair value is tried before a county judge, lawyers, and a jury.