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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Easement Language: Heirs and Assigns

    This question is concerning an easement road to our cabin in Gig Harbor Washington.

    We have a family cabin accessed by an easement road that serves about 9 properties. Ours is about the 3rd property that the road passes as it extends north to a dead end. One of the neighbors to the north of us placed no trespassing signs on the road and claims that we can't legally pass to visit the neighbor at the end of the road.

    The easement states, in part, that "it is understood that this easement is in common with all of the other poperty owners above named and that is a non-exlusive easement and that all such property owners, their heirs and assigns shall have equal use in this easement".

    My mother inherited this property from her mother but never had her name recorded with Pierce County as the owner (this will be rectified shortly). Since my mother owns this property, the neigbor claims that she has the right to use the easement (as an heir) but I cannot because I do not qualify as an heir. They state, in part, "One cannot become an heir afterall until the death of the owner" and that until I produce a will fom my grandmother mentioning my name as an heir, I am not.

    I say that I am an heir and I should be able to use the road as well.

    Any comments? I can't believe that the neighbor is correct in this matter.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,376

    Default Re: Easement -Heirs and Assigns

    You can be an "assign" before you are an heir.

    It is all the same.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Easement -Heirs and Assigns

    So what is the legal definition of an assign in this case?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Easement -Heirs and Assigns

    And also,

    The definition of an heir that I found is:

    1. A person who inherits or is entitled by law or by the terms of a will to inherit the estate of another.
    2. A person who succeeds or is in line to succeed to a hereditary rank, title, or office.
    3. One who receives or is expected to receive a heritage, as of ideas, from a predecessor.

    So would this not make me an heir right now?

    Thanks for the help

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    75,925

    Default Re: Easement -Heirs and Assigns

    Those aren't words of limitation - they're words demonstrating that the grant passes with the property to anybody who inherits the land (heirs) or anybody who otherwise acquires the land or rights to the land (assigns) from the person to whom the easement is granted. With an easement of this sort, the owner can normally let anybody they wish use the easement for ingress and egress.

    If I understand, the road is something like this:

    | 1 3 5 7
    +-+-+-+-+-9
    | 2 4 6 8


    We'll assume, without worrying about the details, that you live at 3, the problem neighbor lives at 6, and you want to visit the person who lives at the end of the street, at 9.

    Is this person seriously of the belief that she can stop anybody from going down the road past her home unless they can prove they're in the will of the people who live past that point in the road? "Sorry - my neighbor's not allowed to have friends over, unless they're in his will."

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Easement Language: Heirs and Assigns

    Yes, they are very serious. But they only want to limit our family. We have some ongoing issues with these neighbors. The bottom line is that they want my mom to sell them our property (for a variety of reasons).They seem to be doing everything they can to wear her down and frustrate her.

    They have a full time residence while ours and the rest of the neighbors are recreational. Half of the lots are vacant and unbuildable.

    | 1 2 3 4 5 6
    |----------- ours would be lot 3 and theirs is lot 4 with the neighbor at 6
    | 1 2 3 4 5 6
    (water front)


    thanks again

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,823

    Default Re: Easement Language: Heirs and Assigns

    None of you should be discussing this with this woman.
    If she seriously has a problem with you driving on the road, let her take you to court.
    Do not bait her.
    Do not engage her.
    If noone argues with her, she will either have to take you to court, or shut up.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Easement Language: Heirs and Assigns

    Therein lies the problem.

    She has taken us to court. She filed an anti-harassment petition against my brother for this and other unfounded items. First time it was thrown out. The second time she rambled on so long and lied so often that the (idiot) judge decided to play it on the safe side and ordered my brother to have no contact and not to survail her. This emboldened her to the point of accosting my wife and I in the road. She would stand in our way snapping pictures in our faces and take pictures of me, my wife and my daughter while we're in the backyard of our cabin (she can see us from her upstairs window).

    I finally had to file an anti-harassment petition against her on behalf of my family. She countered with a petition claiming that I am stalking her, "skulking" in the bushes and threatening her. All of which is completely absurd. The judge in this hearing recomended "dipute resolution" before hearing much testimony. So.......we have a meeting with them next week (my mother and I and the two of them) to discuss these matters with two mediators. I have a ton of documentation, pictures, corraspondence and other items to support my case but I'm looking to just clarify the easement issue as much as possible.

    It would take an hour to explain the whole situation and everything that has been done. The bottom line, however, is that we have done everything to either ignore her or corraspond in a very reasonable manner.

    Her (and her husbands) goal is to drive us out. They want our well (we have the only water rights) and they don't like having anybody around.

    I wish I could just avoid contact with them. Unfortunately that's not possible right now.

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