Dominium Eminens Law and Legal Definition

Dominium eminens is the Latin term for the right of eminent domain. The term is taken from the legal treatise, De Jure Belli et Pacis, written by the Dutch jurist Hugo Grotius in 1625. It means supreme lordship. Under dominium eminens the property of subjects is under the eminent domain of the state, so that the state or one who acts for it may use and even alienate and destroy such property, not only in the case of extreme necessity, in which even private persons have a right over the property of others, but for ends of public utility. But when this is done the state is bound to make good the loss to those who lose their property.