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Compulsory purchase orders

A compulsory purchase order (CPO) can be used to buy your home, property or land from you.


You have the right to object to a CPO that affects your home.

You should object to the organisation who want to purchase your home. They're called the acquiring authority.

You must get at least 21 days to submit your objection.

Who can object

  • the owner, tenant or occupier of a property that is subject to a CPO

  • anyone affected by planned work - for example, you could be affected by a new motorway being built nearby because it will decrease the value of your home

  • anyone who has an issue with the work - for example, an environmental group objecting to a motorway being built because it increases pollution

How to object

There’s no set form for objecting.

The notice you get from the acquiring authority should explain how to object.

What to include

  • your name and address

  • your status - whether you’re an owner, tenant, occupier or someone affected by the work

  • the reasons for your objection

Reasons for objecting

You should include things like:

  • the impact on you having to move home

  • how you think it will affect your local community

  • whether you’ll be able to afford to stay in the same area

You cannot object on the basis that you have not been offered enough compensation. There’s a different process to challenge the amount you’re being offered.

Getting support for your objection

To strengthen your objection, you can do things like:

  • ask your councillor, MSP or MP to support it

  • work with your local residents’ association to make a joint objection

You can get free independent advice on objecting to a CPO from Planning Aid for Scotland.

If there’s a public inquiry

If any owners or tenants object, there must be a public inquiry about the CPO.

A public inquiry is run by someone who is independent from the acquiring authority.

The inquiry gives everyone who objected the chance to give their reasons and show any evidence they have.

Once the public inquiry is completed, it will make recommendations to the Scottish Government, who’ll make the final decision.

If your objection is unsuccessful

The CPO will be confirmed. You’ll be sent:

  • a letter confirming the CPO

  • a copy of the CPO

  • a form for claiming compensation

To challenge this, you must appeal to the Court of Session within 6 months.

You’ll need a solicitor to help you do this. They’ll help you understand if you have a case, and appeal on your behalf.

Find a solicitor on the Law Society of Scotland

Check our advice on getting legal help for free or at a lower cost.

Last updated: 15 December 2023

Housing laws differ between Scotland and England.

This content applies to Scotland only.

Get advice if you're in England