Expropriation and Surface Rights

Sometimes, governments and utility companies can affect landowners’ rights by forcibly taking privately owned land. Those landowners have been coming to Prowse Chowne LLP for over 40 years to shield themselves from the government and big businesses and to gain professional assistance to maximize compensation.

Governments take owners’ land rights for public projects through Expropriation. Energy and utility companies can force themselves on landowners through Surface Rights legislation. Landowners’ rights and remedies are subtly different depending upon which legislation is applied. The common element in each case is that the exact legal procedures specific to each type of taking must be precisely followed. Our lawyers have the knowledge and experience to ensure our clients’ rights are maintained no matter the process or purpose of the proposed taking.


While we can’t always stop the taking, Prowse Chowne LLP lawyers can and do maximize our clients’ compensation. We do so by utilizing the provisions of the applicable Statutes, applying the court precedents developed around those laws and using our considerable experience interpreting those laws and cases to our client’s advantage. We utilize expert witnesses, our clients’ testimony and our advocacy to recover market value and damages including injurious affection, severance, business losses, personal expenditures, special economic advantage, equivalent reinstatement (home for home), interest, penalty interest, reclamation costs and much more. Each case is different and we take the time to walk the lands, know our clients and their businesses and really appreciate all impacts. Using the costs provisions of the Expropriation and Surface Rights Acts we are most often able to resolve cases without any legal costs to our clients whatsoever.

Our Leadership

Prowse Chowne LLP is an undisputed leader in this field. With our skills, knowledge and expertise gleaned from decades of practice in this area, we have helped hundreds of landowners, tenants and leaseholders enforce their rights and recover complete compensation. While we have been involved in several landmark Court, Land Compensation Board and Surface Rights Board cases, the vast majority of our files have been concluded to our client’s satisfaction through negotiated settlements or creative use of Mediation or Arbitration processes.

To learn more about Expropriation and Surface Rights, please view some of the links on this page:

An Expropriation Timeline:

An Expropriation Timeline

Expropriation Papers:

Tax – A Compensation Issue

Expropriation Costs in Alberta

The Government Taketh Away

Valuation of Conservancy Interests

Incidental Damages—A Uniquely Alberta Approach

Expropriation of Farmland in Alberta

Land Compensation Board Orders:

Board Order 170 – Paterson Park v. Grande Centre

Board Order 387 – Mount Lawn Industries v. Edmonton

Board Order 396 – Koebernick v. Edmonton

Board Order 397 – Koziol v. Edmonton

Board Order 410 – Koziol v. Edmonton (penalty Interest)

Board Order 413 – Guaranty Properties v. Edmonton

Board Order 425 – Brese v. Edmonton

Board Order 427 – Friesen v. Alberta Infrastructure

Board Order 436 – Ordman v. Red Deer

Board Order 440 – Marks v. Westlock

Board Order 450 – James v. Forestburg

Board Order 453 – Ciphery v. Alberta Transportation

Board Order 455 – Clark v. North 43 Lagoon Commission

Board Order 501 – 657406 Alberta Ltd v. Alberta Transportation

Expropriation Inquiry Decisions:

Sokil v. Edmonton

Guaranty Properties Limited v. Edmonton

Yellowhead Motor Inn Ltd. v. Edmonton

Wild v. Edmonton

Keg Restaurants Ltd. v. Wood Buffalo

1166404 Alberta Ltd. v. Red Deer

Moses v. Vermillion

Link to the: Alberta Land Compensation Board

Our Professionals