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Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 37399
Experience:  16 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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What are the laws in Washington state regarding an ingress/egress with utilities on the pr

Customer Question

What are the laws in Washington state regarding an ingress/egress with utilities on the property I own for the person who is using the easement to alter the land?
My neighbor paved, and planted and now maintains which I did not give permission for.
He also runs a commercial construction business in a residential zoned area so there is a lot of traffic daily as he has office workers and crews and clients that pass over my property?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 2 years ago.
Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can..The rights and responsibilities of an easement are spelled out in the specific terms of the easement and control what the owner of the easement can use it for. But since an easement is considered a "burden on the land" it is the underlying property owner who is responsible for maintaining it unless the easement specifically states otherwise..However, since the landowner still owns the land the easement is on, the holder of the easement can't do anything to change the land without permission from the landowner. This includes improving it by paving or otherwise altering it..So if the easement holder doesn't specifically have the right to improve it in the written easement, then they can't do so and any changes would be a violation of your rights as the property owner and you could file suit for "property damage" to force the easement holder to remove any improvements. If this is an ingress egress easement, then they just have the right to cross over your land, but not leave any personal property (i.e. the paved road) on it. .With that said, under WA law, you would have 6 years from the date of the "damage" to file suit against the easement holder to force him to remove the paving from your property. The fact that it improves the land is not legally relevant because the easement holder didn't have permission to do so..As for the traffic, if the easement is only for residential use, you could also file a lawsuit called a "quiet title" action to have a judge formally issue an order that limits the use for residential purposes and not for commercial ones as that would be an unreasonable burden on you as the landowner to have to maintain the easement for commercial use...thanksBarrister

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