My House is Your House

The Tidhar family lived in their house for many years and had no plans to leave, until 2006 when the government road building company “Ma’atz” confiscated their home.

Fighting the decision in the courts was unsuccessful and the only question that remained was the amount of compensation that they would receive for their house.

The Tidhars asked to be compensated with an amount that would enable them to either build or purchase a new house in an adjacent neighborhood. Ma’atz wanted to compensate them according to the market value of their house on the date it was confiscated.

The court agreed that the Tidhar family should be compensated for the cost of purchasing another house including legal fees, purchase tax and real estate agent’s fees for the new purchase. However, the court also decided that the date according to which the price of the new house should be calculated should be the date of the confiscation order, two years previously. The decision was based primarily on the fact that the Tidhars caused the delay in the purchase of their new house by fighting to stay in the old one.

This court decision is important because it sets a precedent that public authorities cannot choose a method by which compensation is calculated based on what is convenient for them and also because it added the additional costs that purchasers incur when purchasing a property.