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There is an easement on the eastern 10 ft. Of my property to…

There is an easement...

There is an easement on the eastern 10 ft. Of my property to access the lot behind mine. The owner of the property behind mine pulls into my driveway and crosses my front yard going from west to east and then to the back of my property to his. Through March it rained almost every day. The first week of April he crossed my front yard and went to the lot behind mine. The back part of my lot is low and he left ruts making it hard to mow. What can I do to remove the easement or at least stop him from damaging my property?

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?

All I’ve done is tell him not to cross my front yard and to smooth out the ruts next time. I called him to talk and he doesn’t answer the phone. So I had to text him. No response. I work nights and am asleep when he comes through.

Lawyer's Assistant: Where is the property located?

Outside Manchester Tennessee.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

He use to own the house I live in and property. He got a divorce and his ex lost the property. I bought the foreclosure.

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Answered in 1 minute by:
5/3/2018
Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 32,264
Experience: JA Mentor
Verified

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear about your situation.

Does the easement cross your front yard? What does the easement say about maintenance and/or repair?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
No it doesn’t cross my front yard. The easement is is on the eastern 10’ of my lot. My house faces north. My lot is 100’ by 438’. The easement runs down 438’.
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Where are you located?

Thank you.

In that case, your neighbor is trespassing. He only has a right to cross the easement. That's it. You can file a civil action against him for trespass, asking for the cost of fixing your front yard, plus punitive damages.

Removing the easement may not resolve the issue, because he's not driving on it. But the only way to do that would be to buy it from him. If there's no other way to access the property from the main road, you wouldn't be able to do that.

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Another way to stop him from driving on your front yard would be to put up a fence, which you'd be allowed to do, but I don't know if that's feasible in your situation.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
After he crosses my front yard he does use the 10’ easement. On the easement part is where the damage is making it hard to mow. I bought this property two years ago. At first he was parking in my driveway and driving his mower back there, which I didn’t mind. This year he started driving back there, crossing my front yard. There is about 12 acre field on the east side of my yard adjacent to the easement. I don’t know why he doesn’t use it.
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Is there anyway to remove an easement?

He's not allowed to cross your yard to get to the easement. He's only allowed to drive on the easement itself. If it's impossible to access the easement without crossing either your yard or the field, then you can negotiate with him to extend the easement across the field. He would have to pay you for that. But he's still trespassing when he drives across your yard unless or until you reach an agreement that lets him do it.

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There are only two ways to remove an easement. Neither will work if he can't get from a public road to his property any other way, which can be an issue since you said the property was initially one large parcel of land.

The first option is to buy it back. He has to agree to do that, and you'd have to pay him. Or you could negotiate where you don't sue him for damaging your land if he agrees to give up the easement.

The second option is to bring a lawsuit stating that he's exceeding the scope of the easement and asking the judge to take it away from him. That's usually for a scenario where someone starts driving heavy equipment on the easement or begins using the property for a business that includes a lot more driving than anticipated. Here, since he's driving on areas not covered by the easement, you're more likely to get relief with a trespass suit.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ok. I’ll put up no trespassing signs and go from there. I tried to buy the lot. But he wants way more than its worth. Thank You for your time and information.

You're welcome. Good luck.

Please rate my service positively, as this is the only way that I get paid for the time spent answering your questions. Thank you.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
How do I rate this? I don’t see anything to click on.

There should be buttons either at the top or the right of the screen, depending on what device you're using. If you don't see them, I can ask customer service to take care of it.

Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 32,264
Experience: JA Mentor
Verified
Lucy, Esq. and 87 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Lucy, one more question. Can a driveway be built on the easement!

You can build a driveway on the easement. He couldn't without your permission, unless there's something in writing that permits it. He's allowed to maintain it, but not improve it.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
There are trees on the eastern edge of my property. They were there when the easement was written. Do I measure off the trees or the edge of the property? And what do you mean by he’s allowed to maintain it? Mow or what?
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Never mind. I believe I understand. Maintain it as in make it passable. Thank You!

Right. He could mow the area, or fill in potholes.

You'll measure from the edge of the property unless the easement says otherwise. If trees start to encroach in a way that means he can't drive on that strip, then you could be required to remove them.

You're welcome!

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