Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 10

FEATURE

How Gas Stations and Convenience

Stores Should Prepare in Advance of an

Eminent Domain Taking

By Tony Policastro,
Policastro Law Group

E
OLEX KMET/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

minent domain takings to
widen roads or intersections
have a disruptive and sometimes devastating effect on
gas stations and convenience
stores. Due to gas stations
and convenience stores being located at
highway or street intersections or on busy
roads, they are more susceptible to eminent domain takings. When gas station or
convenience store owners and operators
are faced with eminent domain concerns
in Florida, it is essential that they prepare
adequately for the taking of their land
and businesses. Although every eminent
domain case is different, there are certain

steps that every gas station/convenience
store owner or operator must follow well
in advance of the condemning authority
taking their property or business.
* Familiarize yourself with the requirements for asserting a business damage claim and begin assembling
business records. Chapter 73, Florida
Statutes governs business damage
claims in eminent domain cases. In order
to assert a business damage demand,
a business must have been continuously operating on the property being
acquired for at least five years. The property being acquired must be a partial
taking. A whole taking of property precludes a business damage claim.
In paragraph 73.015(2)(c)(2), Florida
Statutes lays out the specific business
records that must be included with
a business damage claim. Business
records include, in part, copies of federal income tax returns, state sales tax
returns, balance sheets, profit and loss
statements and other records which
are attributable to the business operation of the property to be acquired.
These other records can include

Eminent domain takings are something for which every convenience
store owner needs to be prepared.
10

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monthly gallonage reports, W-2s, W-3s,
Miscellaneous Income Statements
(Form 1099-MISC) and the schedule of
fixed assets and depreciation.
Early on in the process, when you realize the road project is forthcoming in the
next few years, make sure you have all
of your records in good order and that
they accurately state your income. These
business records are the basis for any
business damage claim. If you acquired
an existing business during the five-year
eligibility period, it is important that you
have appropriate documentation of this
fact, and, if possible, business records for
the prior operation.
* Review all current leases for the property, dealer supply agreements and
branding agreements. Make sure you
have a written lease if the property ownership and business ownership are in
separate names. The remaining lease
term, including options, should extend
at least 15 years beyond the estimated
date of taking in order to maximize your
business damage claim.
Review your dealer supply agreement for the penalties that could be
imposed if your business is wiped out
or if the taking will cause you to fail to
meet minimum gallonage requirements.
Any penalties you will have to pay your
gasoline supplier as a result of the taking
must be taken into account and added
to your business damage claim.
Branding agreements may include
rebates and up-front payments that
must be repaid if you are wiped out
at the location. You need to claim all
losses that directly flow from going
"dark," including costs that may have
been advanced to you for signage and
upgrading the location at the start of
the contract, but which are repayable
in the event of early termination. You


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Petrogram - Fall 2018

Chair’s Perspective
How Gas Stations and Convenience Stores Should Prepare in Advance of an Eminent Domain Taking
C-Stores See Competitive Edge in Higher-Quality Hot and Cold Food Offerings
Five Market Domination Strategies to Deploy for Even More Profits
The Florida Lottery: Building Brighter Futures
Calendar of Events
Index of Advertisers/Advertiser.com
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - Intro
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - cover1
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - cover2
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 3
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 4
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 5
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 6
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 7
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 8
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - Chair’s Perspective
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - How Gas Stations and Convenience Stores Should Prepare in Advance of an Eminent Domain Taking
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 11
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - C-Stores See Competitive Edge in Higher-Quality Hot and Cold Food Offerings
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 13
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 14
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 15
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - Five Market Domination Strategies to Deploy for Even More Profits
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 17
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 18
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - The Florida Lottery: Building Brighter Futures
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - 20
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - Calendar of Events
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - Index of Advertisers/Advertiser.com
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - cover3
Petrogram - Fall 2018 - cover4
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