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RONB-ESQ, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 357
Experience:  Right of Way Manager at Access Midstream Partners, LP
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Our house was built in 1955 on unincorporated land in our

Customer Question

Our house was built in 1955 on unincorporated land in our county. In 1971 our city was formed. When a next door neighbor had her land surveyed, she discovered an easement on the back of her property. So did the neighbor on the other side of our home. Both neighbors were able to have the easement eliminated from their properties because they were going to do some remodeling. I had no plans at the time and was very busy at work. I did, however, have my property surveyed and did a lot line adjustment with the help of my title company because the property is on a hillside. At the time I also learned that the fence on the two neighbors that straddled the back of my property were, in fact on my property in the back. At one end of the back of my lot it was 3 feet. On the other side of my lot it went down to 0; however, both neighbors that abut my property at the back of the lot are on my property at some point along the back lot line.
I wanted to move my fence to its proper placement, but because I have the easement still showing up on my property, the fence company I asked would not move my fence. I now regret that I didn't take the time to eliminate that pesky easement (from the phone company) and would like to do it now. By the way, there are no wires on that easement. The telephone lines are on poles on the front of everyone's lot on the street.
How do I proceed to eliminate that easement now. At the time Southern Pacific Bell was the telephone company for our area. Now it is AT&T. Once again my lot is the only one that still has this easement on my side of the cul de sac.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 1 year ago.

I spent the last 5 yrs working primarily for a natural gas pipeline company and am fairly knowledgeable about easements. First did your neighbors actually get AT&T to abandon the easement or simply grant them the right to build a fence on top of the easement. For us we would rarely give up an easement unless someone was willing to buy it. We would take steps to work with landowners to allow them to do things the easement original prevented. You might want to try and find a contact within the AT&T Right of Way group. As many times as that company has changed in the last 40+ years I think they would have trouble finding anything?? I know that is not exactly the answer you wanted.

Have you called the one call system 811 and tried to determine if there is any line in the ground. When you call that number and indicate you are doing fence work at the back of your yard every utility must come out and mark their lines. THat would be a perfect time to catch the right person from AT&T because if they come out even though that guy is just a line locator he would know who to contact to modify the easement. If you find there is nothing in the easement you might be able to sign an agreement with a fence company stating that you assume all risk related to building the fence on the easement and release them from liability. This is typically called an agreement to indemnify.

Please respond right here with follow up questions. Its my goal to fully answer your question so please ask follow ups or ask me to clarify.

Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 1 year ago.

I just wanted to check in and let you know I am available to continue with your question once you respond to the information above should you need clarification or a follow up question.


Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 1 year ago.

Checking in again to see if you are online and if you have additional questions or need me to clarify my answer. If this answers your question thank you in advance for providing positive feedback as that is the only way I am compensated from the website. Do note that you can ask as many follow up questions as you want for free even after leaving positive feedback.


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