Hi. New expert here. Allow me to assist.
You originally stated:
I am requesting information as to how I may access a parcel of land that I own, unimproved, with no frontage on a public road.
I owned two adjacent parcels of 3.5 acres each for over 35 years. Both 500 feet from a county road. Parcel "A" had a 60 ft wide driveway to a county road. I lost this parcel, with improvements, to foreclosure
.The redemption period has past and the property has been sold. Parcel "B" abuts parcel "A" but has no driveway to the County road. Parcel "B" has in it's deed, a road easement on the east part thereof. The owners of adjoining property have accompanying easements that have been obstructed by buildings and or plowed corn fields. This renders my "easement" not reasonably usable as the deeds do indicate.
I am also asking whether or not I have access to the parcel "B" through my former property under a "prior use"as this was the principle means of access for over 35 years. I would appreciate a clear and concise answer as to what are my rights and or options may be. The value of this property relies greatly on the accessibility thereof. I am a Senior citizen, living with a fixed income. Thank you in advance for your help.
As is always the case - property cannot be "landlocked".
So, by law - what happens is - that they go back in time what the parcel that is "landlocked" was part of a larger parcel of land that wasn't.
Since you owned "A" and "B" at one time - "B" would be part of the larger parcel "A + B".
A court would award you an easement over A just on that basis alone - an easement by necessity. The court would rule you have an easement over A because you at one time owned both of the parcels.
Additionally, easements can be made by "prior use" and "easement by necessity" in your case.
Easement by necessity - parcels without access to a public way may have an easement of access over adjacent land if crossing that land is absolutely necessary
to reach the landlocked parcel.
Easement by prior use - An easement may also be created by prior use. Easements by prior use are based on the idea that land owners can intend to create an easement, but forget to include it in the deed
What you were originally describing was an easement by prescription (a form of adverse possession). However, that would not be applicable in your case because you have to be using land of anothers to make that claim - you were using your own land. Easements by prescription
, also called prescriptive easements
, are implied easements granted after the dominant estate has used the property in a hostile, continuous and open manner for a statutorily prescribed number of years. Prescriptive easements differ from adverse possession by not requiring exclusivity.
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