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Questions on Property Owner's Rights

Property owners have a list of rights depending on the nature of the property they own and the nature of the ownership of said property. It’s important to know the limits of those rights when faced with such issues as property vs. mineral rights or a neighbor’s actions that may affect your property.

Listed below are a few questions on issues related to property owner’s rights.

I have a ranch in Wyoming and the people who own mineral rights would like to look for minerals on the ranch through a seismic survey. Am I entitled to compensation here from a property owner’s rights’ perspective?

Legally, the mineral rights’ owners can explore the land and not pay for anything unless they cause some damage to your property. If they do need to drill, they could end up causing harm and decide to offer you some compensation. The best thing for you to do in such a case would be to consult with a local lawyer who could help you negotiate compensation if drilling does occur. In the event there is considerable damage caused to your land, you could possibly file a lawsuit against the owners of the mineral rights.

I have beachfront property in Florida. People who come from other beaches set up chairs and umbrellas in front of my property. Do I have property owner rights to get them to move?

The part of the land that stretches from the high tide mark to the dock is land that the law says cannot be restricted from use. There will be an easement/right of the general public to use the land as long as they don’t cross your property to access it. According to the common laws on property issues, if the public can get to the beach through the water or some other way, then they can use the beach.

As a property owner, what right do I have to prevent a neighbor from letting his pit bulls run around my property at any time of the day?

You should contact animal control since this would fall under their jurisdiction. The neighbor is also preventing you from enjoying a basic right which is to enjoy your property. In this regard, you could consider filing suit and obtaining a restraining order to prevent the dogs from running freely across your property. Another affordable alternative would be for you to get a property law attorney to send a cease and desist letter to your neighbor stating the animals should be restricted or a lawsuit will follow. The neighbor will most likely be motivated to comply with the order to avoid litigation.

What are my property owner’s rights to prevent damage to my house and vehicles thanks to a neighbor’s tree that is encroaching on my property?

According to the law, you do have the right to trim the tree so it doesn’t cross the boundary of your property. As long as you do not damage the tree, you would have no liability towards your neighbor should the trimming cause the tree any problem.

Can one of the owners of a property have a property purchase right over the public when acquiring the property in a partition action?

No. This is not possible. At a property partition action, there is no “first right of refusal". Since the auction is open to public, whoever appears at the auction and makes the highest bid for the property will end up getting it.

Property laws exist across different states to protect property owners’ rights to their piece of real estate. This would include rules and regulations to fight everything from minor problems like invasion of privacy to bigger issues like encroachment and property disputes.

Ask a Real Estate Lawyer

Tina
Tina, Lawyer
Category: General
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Experience:  17 years of legal experience including real estate law.
4460311
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Recent Property Owners Rights Questions

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    My tenant in Meridian Idaho was given a notice to vacate order on Sept 5th 2014 for 42 days. She never would speak to me or give me any notice of when she would be out. The vacate order was until midnight of the 17th of October. She never paid me my rent from the 1st of Oct to the 17th. The neighbor lady is helping my tenent trying to threaten me to return the entire deposit. I have no forwarding address and I never checked her out of the rental. The property does need a few things to rerent. Am I obligated to return partial deposit of $300.00 to her maybe through the mail and they can forward even though she owes me rent? The neighbor lady is threatening to take me to court.
  • Ely – this is Will Wallace pro se again. One of the opposing

    Ely – this is Will Wallace pro se again.
    One of the opposing Philadelphia/national law firms Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin represent two of our former attorneys in two separate pending lawsuits Wallace v Tupitza and CNA Defendants and Wallace v Jokelson et al before two different judges in the Court Of Common Pleas for Chester Co. PA. I have argued the following regarding Marshall Dennehey representation of Jokelson:
    Marshall Dennehey are conflicted by representing attorney Defendant Jokelson in this action regarding the underlying Wallace v. Klehr Harrison law firm as well as representing attorney defendant Tupitza in Wallace v Tuptiza and CNA Defendants regarding the same underlying Wallace v. Klehr Harrison, yet Marshall Dennehey are paid by CNA Defendants. These three parties Jokelson/Tupitza/CNA Defendants have adverse interests in both cases. Moreover, Marshall Dennehey have engaged in conflicted conduct by having possession and/or access through clients Tuptiza and Jokelson to “client-attorney privilege” communications Wallace with Tupitza and adversely “client-attorney privilege” communications Wallace with Jokelson.
    Marshall Dennehey withdrawal now will not cure the already poisoned wells of both actions, and Marshall Dennehey conflicts are commingled with the Wallace v CNA Defendants and Tuptiza action against Tupitza for breach of duty by conflict of interest as well as Wallace v. Klehr Harrison action against Klehr Harrison for breach of duty by conflict of interest.
    footnotes:
    1. In August 2014 Mr. Wallace called attorney Moore regarding Mr. Wallace’s August 8, 2014 letter, Exh. “A” to Plaintiffs September 24, 2014 brief supporting Motion to compel regarding taking the deposition of Jokelson, but attorney Moore used the phone call to argue for lack of jurisdiction of the CNA Defendants (who are paying Marshall Dennehey) in Wallace v CNA Defendants and Tuptiza. The interests of all three parties, Jokelson, Tupitza, and CNA Defendants are adverse.
    2. Professional Responsibility Rule 1.7 conflict of interest:
    1) the representation of one client will be directly adverse to another client.
    [a] concurrent conflict of interest exists if:
    (2) there is a significant risk that the representation of one or more clients
    will be materially limited by the lawyer’s responsibilities to another client, a
    former client or a third person or by a personal interest of the lawyer.
    Vanderveer Group v. Petruny, 1994 WL 314257 (E.D.Pa.1994) Troutman, J.:
    "Both [Pa.R.P.C.] Rule 1.7 and Rule 1.9 give effect to the overarching principle that an attorney owes a duty of loyalty to clients and should not be involved in litigation in which loyalties to two current clients or to a current and former client are likely to be divided. Thus, an attorney should avoid situations in which the duty of loyalty to one client might be impaired by the equally important duty to
    vigorously represent the other client." [emphasis added]
    Maritrans GP Inc. v Pepper, Hamilton & Scheetz, 602 A.2d 1277, 1292 (1992)
    “There is a presumption of misuse of a client’s confidences whenever a conflict exists and therefore the breach of duty alone is actionable…Moreover, the majority in the instant appeal concedes that the concern is not that actual disclosure has occurred, but that the circumstances create significant potential for such disclosure” (emphasis added) quoting Justice Cardozo in Woods v. City Nat’l. Bank & Trust Co., 312 U.S. 262, 61 S.Ct. 493, 85 L.Ed. 820: "A fiduciary…may not…insist[] that although he had conflicting interests, he served his several masters equally well or that his primary loyalty was not weakened by the pull of his secondary one. … [emphasis added]
    Middleburg v. Middleburg, 427 Pa. 114, 115, 233 A.2d 889, 890 (1967) “The test of whether an attorney has conflicting interests so as to preclude his representation of a party is not actuality of conflict, it is the possibility that a conflict may arise”. [emphasis added]
    - - - - - -
    Ely - QUESTION – I don’t believe I have a claim against Marshall Dennehey, because they never represented us. I'm not really interested in getting them disqualified because they are a big target for me at the jury trial – but is there PA case-law or statute that impacts their client defendants?
    e.g. HAVE MARSHALL DENNEHEY SO POISONED THE WELL OF THEIR TWO CLIENT ATTORNEY DEFENDANTS THAT THE TWO ATTORNEY DEFENDANTS MUST BE FOUND LIABLE?
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