When the government needed Jason Campbell’s grandmother’s land in rural West Virginia to widen the road, she had other plans.
Construction workers who showed up to begin work got a bit more than they’d bargained for. Grandma Campbell met them at the edge of the family property with her pearl-handled pistol cocked and pointed, and an unmistakable message, “Get off my land, you scallywags!”
“I wish I still had that pearl-handled pistol, but unfortunately the sheriff confiscated it,” laughed Jason. “It serves as a reminder of how much people’s property really means to them.”
While Jason doesn’t condone using weaponry (however refined) to defend yourself against government authorities who want to take your land, he does believe property owners should have experienced and knowledgeable legal representation on their side. The government certainly does. They have dozens and dozens of lawyers.
Ironically, Jason was one of those dozens of lawyers working on behalf of the NCDOT for nearly 13 years. As a matter of fact, he was lead counsel on the largest project the NCDOT had ever handled at one point in time.
“I feel very fortunate to have spent so many years as an Assistant Attorney General handling cases for the NCDOT. The professional relationships and friendships I developed all over the state and the experience of working on the inside has proven invaluable to me now, and I believe invaluable to my clients,” Jason said.
The more Jason saw how often property owners were leaving good money on the bargaining table just because they didn’t have experienced legal representation, the more he felt pulled in their direction. That’s why he left the government and joined the NC Eminent Domain Law Firm — to work directly with the people.
A property owner Jason recently represented before a jury offered this unsolicited observation, “When Michael Jordan takes the floor you just sit back and watch in awe…that’s how I felt watching Jason try my case!”
Jason has taken dozens of cases to trial in North Carolina, including a number of high-dollar, high exposure cases as lead attorney, and he has argued cases before the North Carolina Court of Appeals. He is a recognized expert in the field and is frequently contacted by the media to comment on eminent domain proceedings, and often gives seminars to other attorneys on how to handle eminent domain cases.
Although Jason is a scholar and intellectual at heart, he is excellent at distilling complex information into something that sounds like casual dinner conversation. One client recently said he thought that’s what persuaded a jury in his favor. In fact, the jury was so moved by Jason’s delivery that they awarded the client more money than Jason asked for!1
All in a day’s work for Jason. As he learned from his grandmother: land is everything to a lot of people. “Whether you are rich or poor, whether you have a lot of land or a little, my goal is to make sure that every property and business owner has a voice and receives just compensation.”