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Having trouble with a neighbor claiming exclusive possession of a shared boat dock that was constructed over 20 years ago.

Watertown, NY |

We recently purchased a property and were told by the seller and realtor that the crib dock on the property line going to the water was shared. The surveyor who did the plot survey before we purchased showed the dock to be dead center on the property line. When we went to use the dock our neighbor claimed to have exclusive right and possession of it and denied us use saying that we were trespassing. They hired the same surveyor to stake the disputed line and he gave us a new survey which showed the dock to be only 6 " on our property. He told us that he didn't think that the placement of the dock in the original survey was going to matter all that much since he was told by our seller that it was shared. So, who owns this dock legally and do we have any rights or entitlements to it.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Bring all the documents, survey, deeds and all others to an experienced real estate litigator in your area. It may be a case of either an easement or adverse possession and possible a claim against a title company if you have title insurance when you purchased the property.

    If this answer is helpful, then please mark the helpful button. If this is the best answer, then please indicate it. Thanks. For further information you should see an attorney and discuss the matter completely. If you are in the New York City area, then you can reach me during normal business hours at 718 329 9500 or www.mynewyorkcitylawyer.com.


  2. Anytime there is a claim of right to land you cannot sleep on your rights. I would recommend contact a lawyer to assist you with this problem. If you purchased the home in reliance upon the use of the dock, you should inform the previous owners of the situation. You may have a suit against them for the lost value of the dock, as well as, other damages. Good luck to you.

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  3. Take all off your documents to a lawyer and get some advice.