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The property with the easement we have used for 30 years was sold to a new owner, he will not allow us to use this easement now.

Bakersfield, CA |

We have been landlocked now for over three years. He sent us a letter wanting $12000.00 and 5 acres of our land in trade for using the road on his property. We have been landlocked for 3 years now. What do we do?

Attorney Answers 5


  1. Best answer

    If the prior use was made with the consent of the prior owner, then you do not have a prescriptive easement.

    If you lot is truly landlocked - meaning that none of its boundary lines touches a public roadway - then you may have a claim for an easement by necessity. If any boundary line touches a roadway, you may need to cut in a new driveway.

    You should consult with a local real estate litigator.

    If this answer was helpful, please mark it as helpful or as a best answer. This answer is for general education purposes only. It neither creates an attorney-client relationship nor provides legal guidance or advice. The answer is based on the limited information provided and the answer might be different had additional information been provided. You should consult an attorney.


  2. What do you do? You need to consult counsel whether or not you wish to agree to the terms offered by the new owner.

    You may have established an easement by prescriptive use or there may be some other legal basis, depending on the exact facts, which would establish an easement assuming you do not have one by grant. You can then determine your best option: litigate or settle with the new owner.

    Litigation is expensive and would definitely cost more than $12,000. Depending on the value to you of the 5 acres, settlement where you obtain a recorded grant of easement that runs with the land, might be a preferable option to litigation especially if you can get the new owner to settle on more favorable terms. The new owner should be anxious to avoid litigation, too.

    I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. Answers provided by me are for general information only. They are not legal advice. Answers must not be relied upon. Legal advice must be based on the interplay between specific exact facts and the law. This forum does not allow for the discussion of that interplay. My answer to any specific question would likely be different if that interplay were explored during an attorney-client relationship. I provide legal advice during the course of an attorney-client relationship only. The exchange of information through this forum does not establish such a relationship. That relationship is established only by personal and direct consultation with me followed by the execution of a written attorney-client agreement signed by each of us. The communications on this website are not privileged or confidential and I assume no duty to anyone by my participation on Avvo or because I have answered or commented on a question. All legal proceedings involve deadlines and time limiting statutes. So that legal rights are not lost for failure to timely take appropriate action and because I do not provide legal advice in answer to any question, if you are an interested party you should promptly and personally consult with an attorney for legal advice. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference


  3. You may have a prescriptive easement already. Consult an attorney in your area.

    DISCLAIMER: Brandy A. Peeples is licensed to practice law in the State of Maryland. This answer is being provided for informational purposes only and the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. For legal advice relating to your specific situation, I strongly urge you to consult with an attorney in your area. NO COMMUNICATIONS WITH ME ARE TO BE CONSTRUED AS ARISING FROM AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP AND NO ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP WILL BE ESTABLISHED WITH ME UNLESS I HAVE EXPRESSLY AGREED TO UNDERTAKE YOUR REPRESENTATION, WHICH INCLUDES THE EXECUTION OF A WRITTEN AGREEMENT OF RETAINER.


  4. First, consult your deed and see if the easement is actually on there. It may have been granted by the previous owner. If not, you may have acquired this easement by prescription, but you will need to consult an attorney in any event, unless you can convince him the easement was granted previously.

    This response is not to be construed as establishing an attorney-client relationship, and provides general information on the subject at hand only.


  5. The easement is not extinguished simply because the property has been sold. Easements run with the land. You should consult with an attorney right away to determine whether you need to take legal action within a statute of limitations.
    Timothy V. Kassouni
    (877) 770-7379

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