Real Estate in Santa Teresa and Mal Pais Costa Rica
Properties in Mal Pais, Santa Teresa, Playa Hermosa and Manzanillo
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Costa Rica Real Estate Guide

Protection of Private Property

You may wonder, "Can the Costa Rican government take my property from me?" Yes, it is possible, but very difficult. One thing to understand is that there are similar conditions we find in the United States and other countries where the government has and can expropriate private property for public interests, i.e. roads, easements, protected areas, etc. The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides such power to the government to expropriate land with just compensation under a power called eminent domain.
There have been cases in the past where the Costa Rican government has expropriated lands for national parks and protected areas, however these are the exception and not the rule. Especially today with new constitutional procedures where the government must legally demonstrate public interest and justly compensate the landowner. Article 45 of the Costa Rican Constitution guarantees equal rights and protection of private property, be it owned by nationals or foreigners.

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