Welcome to the Virginia Eminent Domain Group at Blankingship & Keith, P.C. We are the most experienced eminent domain lawyers in Virginia, having handled many hundreds of cases over the last three decades. The Best Lawyers in America ©2008 to present ranked Blankingship & Keith, P.C. as #1 in Virginia with Hugo Blankingship and Paul Terpak both listed in the area of Eminent Domain and Condemnation law. Paul Terpak was named Best Lawyers' 2012 Washington D.C. Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law Lawyer of the Year.
Hugo and Paul have been editors of the standard handbook on Virginia law, "Eminent Domain: State and Federal", since 1988 with Paul working on the new 2009 edition to be published shortly. In 2002 Paul was selected by the Virginia Code Commission to serve on the advisory committee which produced a complete recodification of all Virginia statutes on eminent domain.
The eminent domain group has long and extensive experience in the trial of eminent domain cases and always seeks to maximize the just compensation due under the Constitution when the government takes property. Hugo and Paul have won many of the highest condemnation awards in Virginia, including the 5th largest jury verdict in Virginia 2005 (out of all cases) and the 7th largest in 2003. But trial is not always the best solution and the group is always willing to consider a fair settlement or an "out of the box" solution to achieve the client's goals. Recent settlements include the unprecedented $84 million purchase by VDOT of the Hunting Towers apartment complex near the Woodrow Wilson Bridge in Alexandria. In an imaginative solution, Paul convinced Virginia Power to redesign a gas pipeline in a manner originally thought impossible to preserve development access to over 1000 acres on the Potomac River in Prince William County.
Besides handling the largest and most complex cases in Virginia, the group has handled all types and sizes of takings from homes, businesses and farms. The team has been strengthened by the addition of Gifford Hampshire, formerly of the Prince William County Attorneys Office, where Giff won a landmark case for compensation to the County from the federal government arising from the expansion of the Manassas Battlefield Park. Giff was the co-author with Paul of the chapter on Regulatory takings in "Eminent Domain: State and Federal". Petula Metzler and Laurie Proctor–both former law clerks in the local courts—add the horsepower to handle any size case. We hope we can be of help to you.