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Question on right of way easement

Carmichael, CA |

I live in Carmichael CA. We own one of three parcels with a right of way easement private road to the main road. Since we are at the end of the private road, can I place a gate across the road at my property line. The private road stops at my front yard.

Attorney Answers 3


Generally speaking, yes. The gate would be okay so long as you are not preventing the other parcel owners from ingress and egress. However, without having reviewed the actual easement, and without more information, one would only be able to provide you with a general rule of thumb rather than a specific response. As a practical matter, before you incur the cost of materials and labor to install such gate, you really ought to consult with your neighbors regarding your plan.

Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney.

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I contacted a Real Estate Attorney. The Title documents show that I have ingress and egress rights over the other two properties but the road technically stops at our property line where it becomes our drive way. Thanks.


I agree with Mr. Chen. A review of the easement is required. The review would need to include not only a review of your deed but the deeds of the other landowners.

I live on a private street and my situation is similar to yours. Our deeds grant an easement for ingress and egress over all 3 parcels for each landowner. The end parcel contains a 3-point turn-around area -- sometimes necessary for large vehicles so they do not have to back down the street. The deeds also contain provisions regarding maintenance.

As the owner of the middle property I would object to your proposed gate which would interfere with my easement, although I would not object to one at the beginning of the street which benefited all three landowners.

IMO, you should get not only consent but written recorded consent unless it is entirely clear that your neighbors have no easement rights over the street on your property.

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I agree with both of my colleagues above. Your rights and obligations will depend on the wording of the easement and prior use history by all the parcels. In order to be safe, try and get the written recordable approval of your easement neighbors.

My answers are general and without knowledge of the details of your situation, therefore, you must not consider them an attempt to give you legal advice. In addition, my comments here will not create an attorney client relationship between us and any discussions here will not be protected or privileged. If the nature of your issue is private, you should not bring them up here.

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