LAW ON EXPROPRIATION
(Published in the
Official Gazette of the Republic of Macedonia No. 33/95-793)
I. BASIC PROVISIONS
This Law shall regulate the expropriation of property and rights on lands, buildings and other commodities (real estate) for the purpose of construction and other matters that are of public interest, and shall determine the due compensation for the expropriated properties.
Public interest as defined by this Law shall entail settlement, rational utilization and humanization of the environment and nature through construction and implementation of issues anticipated in the space planning acts as follows:
- construction of railways, roads, bridges, airports and
accompanying structures and equipment;
- construction of power stations, structures, equipment and lines
for transmission and distribution of electric energy;
- construction of buildings and equipment for postal, telephone
and telegraph traffic, equipment, radio and TV links and
- construction of buildings for defense and civil protection;
- construction of border crossings;
- construction of buildings and equipment for research and
extraction of ores and other natural resources;
- construction of buildings and equipment for water supply;
- construction of streets, plazas, parings lots, parks and squares;
- construction of depositories, purification posts and other
buildings and equipment for the protection of nature and the
- construction of gas lines, oil pipe lines and other lines;
- construction of waterworks, sewerage systems, heating systems,
cemeteries and other public utilities;
- construction of buildings for education, training, science,
culture, health care, social security and sports when activities
are performed as public services; and
- building settlements following extreme natural disasters
(earthquakes, floods, fires and land slides) and relocation of
settlements (inundation, ecological purposes and complex
Public interest regarding construction of buildings and other operations may also be determined through another law.
The definition of public interest for expropriation of real estate, particularly of cultural and historic importance designated by law, shall be conducted under conditions and procedures resolved through a separate law.
The State shall be the beneficiary of expropriation.
Expropriation is conducted for the needs of public services, public enterprises, public funds and the units of the local self-government (expropriation beneficiaries).
Other legal entities and physical persons may become expropriation
beneficiaries if determined through a separate law.
Ownership rights and other resulting property rights shall terminate through expropriation (complete expropriation).
Through expropriation, property rights may be restricted with the establishment of the right to official use, tenure, temporary limitation of the right to utilization and temporary appropriation
for preparatory work on land (incomplete expropriation).
Official rights are established on properties for the purpose of installing water, sewerage and energy lines and positioning and assembling other lines and systems of that are of public interest.
Tenure is established on lands for the purpose of research and extraction of mineral resources.
Tenure is established for a limited period which may not exceed three years from the date the land has been consigned for lease.
Should land characteristics be destroyed through tenure in a way that the land may not be used for the same purpose prior to the lease, the owner of the expropriated land may demand full expropriation of the respective land within a period of one year from the termination date of the lease.
The regulations on property relations shall be applied regarding tenure rights and obligations which have not been determined in this Law.
The right to utilization of land shall be restricted temporarily in order to facilitate particular needs related to the construction of buildings or completion of other operations (temporary positioning of equipment for construction of buildings, assembling temporary quarters for construction workers, passageways and safeguarding of buildings).
The temporary restriction specified under paragraph 1 of this article shall be suspended when the need for its implementation ceases, which may not exceed the completion of construction works.
Temporary appropriation of land is conducted for preparatory work (measuring and inspection) when formulating an expropriation or investment study.
In cases when properties of public interest defined in article 2 of this Law are owned by physical persons or legal entities without the knowledge of the expropriation organs, the property shall be considered as expropriated and former proprietors shall be reimbursed in compliance with the provisions of this Law within a period of five years from the transferal of the property to the expropriation beneficiary.
Legal settlement which may not be less than the market value of the property shall be provided for expropriated properties.
In order to define the legal settlement, the market value of the property shall be determined based on the standards set forth in this Law when the expropriation proposal is submitted or at the request of the proprietor or possessor of other property rights at the time of defining the settlement.
Expropriation beneficiaries shall bear all costs for the settlement of expropriated property and those incurred during the expropriation procedure.
Should it be determined during expropriation of a portion of a property that proprietors do not have economic interest in utilizing the remainder of the property, or that consequently the living and working conditions on the remaining portion have deteriorated, this portion shall be expropriated at the proprietors
A remaining portion referred to in paragraph 1 of this article shall be considered a remaining portion of a lot, a portion of real estate or a remaining portion of the entire real estate which is not being expropriated.
Responsible individuals in charge of the expropriation procedure are obliged to inform proprietors that they may submit an appeal with respect to paragraphs 1 and 2 of this article.
Expropriation appeals on remaining portions of property may be submitted until the passing of an expropriation decision by the court of original jurisdiction, or until the expropriation decision becomes final if proprietors have not been informed in accordance with paragraph 3 of this article.
With the exception of paragraph 4 of this article, appeals on expropriation of remaining portions of property may be submitted within a period of 3 years from the completion date of the structure or the completion of works for which expropriation has been effected, when instances specified under paragraphs 1 and 2 of this article are determined due to the functioning of the built structure which could not have been anticipated during the expropriation procedure.
II. EXPROPRIATION PROCEDURE
Proposals on expropriation are submitted by expropriation beneficiaries to the Office of Legal and Property Affairs (expropriation organ).
Proposals on expropriation are to entail the following information:
1) The expropriation proponent;
2) The property that is the subject of expropriation;
3) The owner of the property and possessor of other property
rights of that respective property, their place of residence
and headquarters; and
4) The structure and other works to be conducted, which are the
subject of the expropriation proposal.
The following documents must also accompany the expropriation proposal:
1) A statement from the document on space planning or a
2) Figures on the property under proposal for expropriation provided
in accordance with the geodesic regulations;
3) An offer stating the type and the level of compensation on
property under proposal for expropriation;
4) Proof showing ownership of the property which is offered as a
replacement for the expropriated property; and
5) Proof of procured funds for compensation of the expropriated property.
The expropriation organ is obliged to:
- Submit the expropriation proposal together with the documents
specified under article 15 of this Law to the owner of the
property and possessor of other property rights within eight days
upon receipt of the expropriation proposal; and
- Submit the expropriation proposal to the organ in charge of
maintaining pubic records of properties in order to register the
expropriation, within eight days upon receipt of the expropriation
Property subject to expropriation may not be sold after registration as stipulated under paragraph 1 item 2 of this article.
Legal acts by which property is sold according to paragraph 2 of this article shall be considered as void.
The expropriation organ shall arrange a discussion related to the expropriation proposal and summon the proprietor, the possessor of other property rights and the expropriation beneficiary. The discussion is to determine the existence of public interest, ownership and other property rights, the type and level of compensation, as well as other facts and circumstances relevant to expropriation. The discussion can not be arranged 15 days prior to the submission of the expropriation proposal to the owner and possessors of other property rights.
The discussion may be concluded following a settlement (agreement) on compensation.
The agreement under paragraph 2 of this article shall substitute the expropriation decision, while the procedures for expropriation and settlement of compensation shall be considered as final.
If an agreement can not be reached according to paragraph 2 of this article, the expropriation organ depending on the facts and circumstances determined during the procedure, shall pass a decision pertaining to the expropriation proposal.
The decision with which the expropriation proposal is adopted must include information on:
1) The expropriation beneficiary;
2) The property to be expropriated and listed information from the
3) The owner of the property and possessors of other property
rights of the respective property, their place of residence
and headquarters; and
4) The structure and other works to be conducted, which are the
subject of the expropriation proposal.
A complaint may lodged against the decision of the expropriation organ to the Commission of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia.
The expropriation beneficiary gains control over the expropriated property on the date the agreement is fulfilled and the decision on compensation is passed by the court.
With the exception of paragraph 1 of this article and at the request of the expropriation beneficiary, in cases of emergency or elimination of evident damages, the expropriation organ with the approval of the Minister of Finance, may decide to hand over the property to the beneficiary until the court of original jurisdiction renders a decision.
In cases specified under paragraph 2 of this article, proprietors and possessors of other property rights are entitled to compensation for non-utilization of property from the date the expropriation beneficiary gains control until the fulfillment date of the agreement and the court decision on compensation.
Proprietors or possessors of residential rights are entitled to temporary lodging in cases when they reside in expropriated residential buildings or work in expropriated buildings or office spaces.
Should the expropriation beneficiary gain control according to article 20 paragraph 2 of this Law, when the expropriation proposal is rejected in the proceeding process, the legal property relations among the expropriation beneficiary and the former proprietor or possessor of other property rights shall be resolved in compliance with the regulations on property relations.
Expropriation beneficiaries may renounce the expropriation proposal until the expropriation decision becomes final.
The final expropriation decision may be revoked by mutual request of the expropriation beneficiary and the former proprietor.
The final expropriation decision may be revoked partially or in full at the request of the former proprietor of the expropriated property if major alterations have not been effected on the structure by the expropriation beneficiary within three years from the final decision with consideration to the nature, size and value of the respective structure.
The request specified under paragraph 3 of this article may be filed within a period of ten years from the final expropriation decision when the property has been appropriated from the owner.
In cases when the objective for expropriation of property is altered, the expropriation decision shall officially be invalidated with the approval of the former proprietor of the expropriated property.
The organ who passed the decision shall decide on the invalidation of the expropriation decision specified in paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of this article.
In cases when the expropriation decision is revoked or the expropriation proposal is canceled, the legal-property relations between the expropriation beneficiary and the former proprietor shall be resolved in the compensation settlement procedure designated in this Law.
III. SETTLEMENT AND COMPENSATION PROCEDURES
As a rule, compensation for expropriated property is settled by providing corresponding property or cash unless former proprietors or possessors of other property rights and expropriation beneficiaries come to a different agreement.
Compensation for expropriated land is settled by providing land that in size, quality and location represents a suitable replacement for the expropriated land.
In cases when expropriation beneficiaries are unable to provide suitable land or due to other circumstances (massive expropriations, expropriation of small lot portions), the compensation shall be settled in cash.
The market value of the expropriated land is determined on the basis of factors, which in accordance with customs and conditions and depending on the time and place of the market, shall define the market price of the land.
When determining the market value of expropriated land according to paragraph 3 of this article that is intended for farming, forestry or other production, the status, cadastral class, climate and economic conditions must be taken into consideration. The construction suitability and location shall be taken into account for land intended for construction.
Former proprietors of expropriated land are entitled to compensation of the value of non-depreciated portions on investments that are relevant to the purpose, the maintenance and improvement of land.
Former proprietors are entitled to compensation for plantations, crops and forests on land based on factors which are used to determine their market price, unless they have been included in the market value of the land.
Compensation for expropriated buildings or other structures shall be settled by providing other buildings or structures that in size, quality, purpose and location represent a suitable replacement for the expropriated buildings or structures.
In cases when expropriation beneficiaries are unable to provide suitable buildings or structures, the compensation shall be settled in cash.
The market value of the expropriated buildings or structures is determined on the basis of factors, which in accordance with customs and conditions and depending on the time and place of the market, shall define the market price of the buildings or structures.
When determining the market value of expropriated buildings or structures according to paragraph 3 of this article, the following must be taken into consideration: the construction value of the building or structure, the funds invested in arranging the construction land, amortization, the type of structure and location.
The market value of expropriated property determined in accordance with articles 24 and 27 of this Law may not be less than the predominant price on the free market for identical or similar properties.
The market value specified in paragraph 1 of this article shall correspond to free market prices determined in agreements on properties at the time and place when the compensation on expropriated property is determined.
Expropriation beneficiaries are obliged to provide a replacement suitable in size, quality, purpose and location to former proprietors residing or working on the expropriated properties at their own request.
Should discrepancies arise between the value of the expropriated property and the property provided as a replacement, the expropriation beneficiary or former proprietor are obliged to reimburse the difference.
If the obligation specified under paragraph 1 of this article falls on the former proprietor, he may reimburse the difference in cash or acquire the right to ownership on a portion of the property within the level of the defined compensation.
The procedure, conditions and terms of payment of the difference in value specified in paragraph 2 of this article shall be determined by way of agreement and through a court decision.
During expropriation of properties belonging to enterprises or stores, the damages suffered due to discontinuation of work or owing to a change of location shall be taken into account when determining the compensation.
The degree of the damage is determined separately for each case.
When determining compensation for structures, which owing to their nature do not represent a trade commodity and consequently a market price can not be set (wells, fences, etc.), the compensation level shall be determined according to the market price of the material and labor used for their construction reduced by the corresponding depreciation amount.
Compensation shall be provided at a reduced amount of the property for the institution of the right to official use.
Property owners are entitled to reimbursement for damages suffered due to institution of the right to official use.
The reduced value and compensation for damages are determined separately for each case.
Compensation for tenure is determined in accordance with the tenure amount received for identical or similar land on the free market.
Land proprietors suffering damages due to tenure shall be entitled to compensation for those damages.
The compensation for damages is determined separately for each case.
Compensation and damages incurred during temporary restriction over the right to utilization and temporary appropriation for preparatory work on land shall be determined in the same way as for tenure.
Former proprietors and possessors of other property rights are entitled to market value compensation for objects which have lost their function due to expropriation, and compensation for transportation costs.
Former proprietors of expropriated property shall not be entitled to compensation for investments made following the date of submission of the expropriation proposal.
Expropriation beneficiaries, and former proprietors or possessors of other property rights may reach an agreement until the expropriation decision becomes final. If such an agreement can not be reached, the expropriation organ is obliged to schedule hearings for settlement of compensation within eight days after the expropriation decision becomes final.
If an agreement can not be reached following the hearings for settlement, the expropriation organ is obliged to submit the case with all accompanying documents to the authorized court within eight days after the expropriation decision becomes final.
The agreement shall define the type and level of compensation.
The agreement shall be entered into a register that is to include all information relevant for the fulfillment of obligations by expropriation beneficiaries, former proprietors and possessors of other property rights.
The agreement shall be concluded with the signing of the register by both parties.
The agreement shall represent an enforcement document.
Expropriation beneficiaries are obliged within 15 days from the agreement settlement and from the date the decision becomes final, to hand over the property rendered as compensation or to reimburse the compensation in cash.
Expropriation beneficiaries who have failed to hand over the property within the term specified under paragraph 1 of this article or have failed to pay compensation in cash, shall be obliged to pay compensation for damages, i.e., interest on the total or on part of the unpaid amount at the discount rate of the National Bank of Macedonia.
In cases when another property is provided as replacement for expropriated property on which mortgage has been placed or
official use rendered, the third person right shall be consigned to the property provided.
If compensation in cash is provided for the property specified under paragraph 1 of this article, the mortgage creditor and possessor of other property rights on the expropriated property shall be compensated in the same amount. In cases of dispute, the expropriation beneficiary shall deposit the compensation in cash on a special bank account by order of the expropriation organ. The bank shall effect the compensation payment based on a settlement approved by the administrative organ and a court decision.
The registration and change of possessors of property rights shall be entered into public records based on the final expropriation decision and agreement, and the compensation decision rendered by the court.
IV. SPECIAL PROCEDURES
Government owned property may be appropriated and utilization rights restricted through a decision rendered by the expropriation organ and a decree on space planning, which is determined in the procedure for expropriation of property in compliance with this Law.
Beneficiaries of the right specified in paragraph 1 of this article are entitled to compensation for invested funds.
Initiated expropriation procedures are the basis for forced concession purchases which are conducted under conditions defined in the regulations on concession.
Through a decision rendered by the expropriation organ in compliance with article 2 of this Law, when procedures are not conducted according to the provisions of other laws, a construction may be torn down without providing compensation if it was build without a building permit after February 15, 1968.
In cases specified under paragraph 1 of this article, proprietors shall be obliged to tear down the construction and remove all materials within the term imposed by the expropriation organ.
Proprietors shall bear all costs incurred for the tearing down of constructions and removal of building materials.
VII. TRANSITIONAL AND CONCLUDING PROVISIONS
According to article 2 of this Law, public interest shall be considered as resolved regarding the construction of residential and commercial complexes, which are to entail urban entities consisting of residential, commercial and combined structures with supplementary corresponding transportation routes in cases when their construction has begun prior to the enforcement of this Law.
Expropriation procedures for the construction of buildings specified in paragraph 1 of this article may be conducted within a period of one year from the date this Law enters force.
Public property may be appropriated and utilization rights restricted through a decision rendered by the expropriation organ according to a space planning decree determined in the procedure for expropriation of property in compliance with this Law.
Beneficiaries of the right specified in paragraph 1 of this article are entitled to compensation for invested funds.
Substitute lodgings shall be provided for possessors of tenancy rights in the procedures determined by this Law.
Expropriation beneficiaries shall provide the lodgings specified under paragraph 1 of this article.
Until this Law enters force, initiated expropriation proceedings shall continue in compliance with the provisions of this Law.
Final expropriation decisions which have not been implemented nor compensation determined, and which are not in compliance with article 2 of this Law shall be revoked at the request of former proprietors unless public interest has been determined though a separate Law.
Compensation shall be determined according to the provisions of this Law in cases where agreements have not been reached nor final decisions rendered.
On the date this Law enters into force the Law on Expropriation (Official Gazette of SRM No. 46/89 and Official Gazette of the Republic of Macedonia No. 36/91) shall no longer be effective.
This Law shall enter into force on the eighth day from the date of publication in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Macedonia.