Aerial photo of housing complex

A common neighborly dispute is a dispute over an easement. An easement is a legal right that allows a person to use someone else’s land for a specific purpose. An easement is most commonly created by an explicit grant in a deed or other recorded instrument, such as a survey. Easements generally exist out of convenience or necessity for neighboring property owners. Most easements “run with the property” meaning they persist after a property is sold. Easement disputes most commonly occur after the sale of a property.

If the document creating the easement is well-drafted, then the description, location, purpose, and any restrictions or terms of use will be included. Most often, we see easements that allow one neighbor to pass through another neighbor’s property to access their land.

However, it is not uncommon that easements are not drafted to include all the pertinent information regarding the purpose, scope, and terms or use. It is common for neighbors to dispute whether one party is overusing the easement, exceeding the scope, and dispute who is responsible for maintenance and repairs.

Potential solutions to easement disputes:

  1. Review your easement, the answer may be contained within the language of the easement.
  2. Discuss the matter civilly with your neighbor, you may be able to resolve the issues with an agreement that makes everyone happy.
  3. Send a demand letter, if a civil discussion does not reach a resolution, a letter from your attorney may help bridge the gap and reach a resolution.
  4. Proceed to Court. If the law is on your side and all other options have been exhausted, then you may need to proceed to Court to protect your rights.

If you are experiencing a dispute with a neighbor over an easement and need help understanding your rights, you can seek an attorney’s assistance. Contact King Law at 888-748-(5464)KING for a consultation. We have offices located across western North Carolina and upstate South Carolina.  We are here to serve you and help navigate this journey you are on.

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