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If the neighbor has been encroaching on your land for over 10 years, they could legally claim ownership of the area they have been using under the legal doctrine of "adverse possession". In West Virginia the period of time for adverse possession must be at least ten (10) years. West Virginia Common Law Code Â§55-2-1.
They would have to file a lawsuit called a "quiet title" action and then prove that they have used it at least 10 years without your or any prior owner's permission... basically to have been trespassers all this time... Then if they can do so, a judge would issue an order awarding them the underlying land that they have been trespassing on.
With that said, you can mess up a sale by threatening to file a lawsuit for trespass as that would cloud the title until it is resolved and prevent any sale. That might give you some bargaining leverage to get them to settle with you and pay you something for it, even if they could legally claim it because an attorney would charge them probably $5K or so to file the suit against you to claim it..
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