What You Need To Know About The Law Concerning California Easements
Wars have been waged over easement and boundary disputes. That is why it is important, from a legal standpoint, to understand the law and your rights concerning California easements. In order to digest this legal topic more easily, you first need to define an easement. By working with San Diego easement attorneys at Equity Legal LLP, you can get a better grasp of your legal rights and options.
The Definition Of An Easement.
An easement is a legal provision—written or unwritten—that allows someone else to use your property for a specific reason. Therefore, most properties are subject to a specific type of easement.
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How Is An Easement Established?
In turn, an easement is created in one of four ways:
- By express grant
- By prescription
- By necessity
- By implied grant
Accordingly, an easement may be created:
- By way of eminent domain
- By implication
- Through a driveway
- Via a shared fence or wall
- By estoppel
- Through a court process
- By continued and long-term use
- By the sale and transfer of real property
- By grant
- Because the parcel is land-locked
- By reservation
- By agreement mutually
- By condemnation
Basic Elements Considered In Use.
Once an easement is established, the following rules for use should be followed legally:
California Easement Law And What It Means?
To define easement use further, you need to review the reason for an easement. This real estate right represents an encumbrance on a property’s title. Therefore, an easement is granted to an entity or person for the use of real property – that is, with certain limitations. This right of ownership is considered incorporeal, or a right that is not physical.
While an easement may be recorded in in public real estate files, it can still exist without any record being made. That is why it is important to scrutinize a tract of land for easements. One of the issues that is often brought up in use and sales cases is whether a property owner knew about an easement’s existence. Therefore, answering this question is often crucial when developing real estate.
California Easement Rights.
Easement owners have the right, legally, to maintain an easement and have a right of access across the easement as well. Even if a fence is removed or trees are cut down along a boundary or strip of land, these activities are normally considered lawful. That is why you need to review your original real estate documents with San Diego easement attorneys.
Have You Ordered A Survey?
If an easement is created from a legal document, you must make certain distinctions with respect to use as well. For example, does the document convey ownership or title to the real estate or only convey a right to use the land? In many instances, a survey is needed to describe the easement access. Doing so will prevent further legal disputes.
Always Review The Wording.
If you are selling a right to an easement, you should have San Diego easement attorneys review the wording for the document. Some of the provisions that should be scrutinized include the following:
- Reversionary language
- Anti-assignment or anti-transfer without consent content
- A legal description survey
With respect to a surveyed location, it is essential that the precise measurement be made of the land in question and be added to an easement document. Otherwise, an easement can end up extending past a preferred boundary.
Types Of California Easements
Easements are frequently laid out for properties when subdivisions are created. Easements may be used for access by utility companies for the addition of power lines, water pipes, phone lines, sewer pipes, cable TV, or gas lines. Specific types of easements are described below:
An Easement In Gross.
An easement in gross covers one property and does not consider the rights of the owner. For instance, a utility line easement represents an easement in gross, and is generally included as a recording in the public records. This common easement permits a utility company to modify or use your land, as required. For instance, if the water company wants to dig a hole in your yard to fix a water main, it has the right to do so.
An Appurtenant Easement By Necessity.
An appurtenant easement is an easement that is created across one piece of real estate so another property can be accessed. Therefore, this type of easement is often created for a parcel of land that does not feature public road access. In order to prove an easement appurtenant by necessity, San Diego easement attorneys must show that a common ownership exists with one of the joint parcels that also features public access.
A Private Easement.
A private easement is a specified easement that is sold by the owner of a property to someone else. For example, this easement may be established to prevent one of the parties from planting trees or shrubs next to a property that needs the sun, such as a building that features solar panels or a conservatory.
A Prescriptive Easement.
A prescriptive easement comes about when someone uses your property without permission. Therefore, this type of easement entails the loss of the use of a portion of a property, such as a drive or walkway. Definitively, this type of easement comes about from the unofficial and continual use of a property by a non-owner.
The legal test that is used for the acquisition of a prescriptive easement of another property owner must include the following:
- Open, transparent and notorious use of the easement; and
- Hostile and continuous use, without the owner’s approval, for five years.
If you purchase real estate and suspect a neighbor’s use of the land, you can grant permission to the neighbor to prevent the formation of a permanent prescriptive easement. San Diego easement attorneys can document the permission in the form of a letter, addressed to the hostile user.
Common Problems With Easements.
Unfortunately, the inclusion of property easements over a tract of land often makes the property owner feel like he or she is giving someone else permission to trespass. That is why you need assistance from San Diego easement attorneys in defining easements and their use for your real estate.
Easement Disputes/Boundary Disputes: Considerations.
In order to define boundaries and reduce the likelihood for easement disputes, you need to work with San Diego easement attorneys to obtain the right legal remedy. For example, property owners and their legal counsel normally review a title or deed for pre-existing easements. If none can be found, it frequently is easier to overcome a dispute.
In some cases, a prescriptive easement can be voided by drawing up a formal written contract or agreement. Alternatively, if someone is using your backyard to get to work or school, you can have a writ of permission created that permits them to use the path in specific instances.
In the case of utility, necessary, or private easements, it often can be difficult to stop a third party’s actions. For example, if the gas company wants to run a pipeline through your property, it normally is backed by the city or town. However, that does not mean you have no legal recourse. If you live in California, you can get the relief you need by contacting a specialist in California easement law.
In this case, you want to speak to Equity Legal LLP, a firm that is focused on your property and easement rights. The professionals who represent the firm are well established and knowledgeable in real estate law.
Therefore, they have the resources needed to draw up California easement agreements and overcome boundary or easement disputes. In order to proceed, San Diego easement attorneys at Equity Legal LLP will review your deed or title and advise you on a legal solution. Regardless of the complexities of a case, San Diego easement attorneys can help you exert your rights.
What Is A California Easement Agreement?
To make sure your property is used according to your wishes, attorneys at Equity Legal LLP can create a California easement agreement. This agreement describes the extent of use as well as an easement’s boundaries and location. An easement can be created by drawing up a deed – a document that is recorded just like any other real property.
An easement can be created for one of various reasons. By drawing up an easement deed or agreement, you can more easily define your property rights, and make it simpler to build a defense. That is why you need to depend on experienced San Diego easement attorneys. Use an advocacy firm, such as Equity Legal LLP, to ensure your real property interests and rights.
Contact Equity Legal To Schedule A Complimentary Consultation
Real estate easements and boundary issues are important to take care of right away before they cause complications to a purchase, sale, or agreement. It's important to select attorneys who are well versed in your case, or situation. We have over 22 years of combined experience as lawyers, and several years experience as property brokers and developers. To further discuss solutions to effectively develop and protect your real estate equity please contact us online or call 619-724-4355 to schedule a consultation.
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