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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    4

    Default Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    My question involves an easement in the state of: PA

    We purchased the property about 1.5 years ago. The neighbor (red X) purchased the land their trailer is on a few months later. They have owned the trailer for approx. 10 years. Both pieces of property were purchased from the same owner. As far as I can tell there is no right-of-way for either of the 3 previous residences. We purchased the property highlighted with the pink square so that is not a problem but this property did NOT have a right of way and was partly the reason it was sold. I've had the property surveyed, a deed search done and researched the properties back until it was one piece of land for right of ways. And none exist, that I could find.

    My question is can the driveway be gated so that the owners of property (red X) not have access? The seller landlocked themselves when they sold the larger pieces to us and then shortly after that sold the landlocked property (x) to the people that have been living there. They have to cross about 75 feet to get to the road.

    The property owners do not have any money and live completely off gov't assistance and they do not own a vehicle. So they couldn't buy a right-of-way/easement or even take us to court if they had to. They hadn't been a problem before, but recently they seem to think they can use the entire driveway to ride a four wheeler on and invite their friends over to ride there. When we told them to stop because they were spinning gravel in the yard, they zig-zagged from one end to the other on purpose. This neighbor also removed one of the "set" survey pins because they thought their property was larger than it was. We had to have the surveyor come out and reset the pin.

    Just some background info. We already have the upper left side (looking at picture) of the driveway gated. The neighbor along the road became belligerent when they moved in and saw it gated and claimed it was a state road. After they found out the next day from the previous owners that there was no right of way they apologized. They are not landlocked and do not cause any problems. And they even offered to pay half to gate the other end of the driveway.


    Hope the picture helps.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,580

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    Looks like the big red "X" has access to the public road.

    I'm still not clear about a few things, like who owns the land surrounding the big red "X". That would be the person who might have a right to gate the road.

    That can always be tried and the results awaited.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    The green around the X is their property line. They are about 70 feet from the public road. All of the brown is our driveway except the tiny piece that is above the blue line to the upper neighbors. The blue line around the driveway is our property line. The X property is landlocked and was sold AFTER we purchased the other lot (30+acres). So the seller owning both property's landlocked the smaller lot and then sold it. The red dots around the X would be their corner pins. I should know tomorrow after speaking with a lawyer. We would like to gate it and give the above neighbor access but not the X neighbors as they are a nuisance.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    Your facts are a bit sketchy but I think you said that this neighbor you dislike has been there for 10+ years.
    You also indicated that you purchased your property with the full knowledge that this undesirable neighbor was present and currently using the access.

    As a practical mater, I think they do have an easement and I also think if you push it too hard it may backfire on you. It is very unlikely that the court will allow you, or anyone else, to cut them off and isolate them and for good reason. Your personal dislike of the people won't carry water in the court and you'd be foolish to present such an argument.

    If your attorney is giving you this advice, and charging you for it, I would get another opinion.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    4

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    The attorney will look into it after the new year. I will be gating AFTER their driveway so that they cannot come onto my property further. The police will be called next time they ride their four wheelers past it.

    There more than just a right of way problem. What about the seller selling me the large lot and then later selling the other piece which is landlocked? From what I read before I understood it that if you landlock yourself by selling the property around it, that you can't (or is hard to) get a right away?

    I don't think they have the $50 to take me to court. At the courthouse he was sued twice for over $9,000 that he owes on, but he lives 100% off ssi/ssdi. They also have a tenant living in a very small pull behind camper on their property... He threatened to shoot my dogs if they ever come onto his property so I fenced the whole way around theirs except their driveway.

    What facts are "sketchy" or what needs further explanation?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    I think your dislike of the neighbor is clouding your focus. I have had a similar issue with the butt head on MY road and there is nothing I can do about it. He has $$$ too.

    Where you put the gate is immaterial. If he is smart all he needs to do is call the sheriff and you are in trouble. You will be promptly told to open the gate or you will get arrested. Additionally, if you have a gate and he has an emergency you're really hung out.

    You purchased the property with this knowledge and you apparently did not do your due diligence. It is not reasonable to come back after the fact with a big pissed off and look to get satisfaction. That sounds harsh but unfortunately these deadbeats always seem to win.

    What the seller did or did not do with this neighbor is none of your concern or business. Your only concern is your access to your property from the state road and the representations (written) that the seller made with you.

    I suspect you will get a pretty good slap with your approach and he will get a free pass and a lot of assistance. Be it fair or not, that is the reality. On the other hand, it will be great if you can win this.

    Dogs ... oh yes I know about those also. Why would he need to shoot your dog? Certainly you keep it at home right?

    Good luck and hopefully you will get this resolved. Come back and share the outcome.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    Quote Quoting RexLan
    View Post
    I think your dislike of the neighbor is clouding your focus. I have had a similar issue with the butt head on MY road and there is nothing I can do about it. He has $$$ too.

    Where you put the gate is immaterial. If he is smart all he needs to do is call the sheriff and you are in trouble. You will be promptly told to open the gate or you will get arrested. Additionally, if you have a gate and he has an emergency you're really hung out.

    You purchased the property with this knowledge and you apparently did not do your due diligence. It is not reasonable to come back after the fact with a big pissed off and look to get satisfaction. That sounds harsh but unfortunately these deadbeats always seem to win.

    What the seller did or did not do with this neighbor is none of your concern or business. Your only concern is your access to your property from the state road and the representations (written) that the seller made with you.

    I suspect you will get a pretty good slap with your approach and he will get a free pass and a lot of assistance. Be it fair or not, that is the reality. On the other hand, it will be great if you can win this.

    Dogs ... oh yes I know about those also. Why would he need to shoot your dog? Certainly you keep it at home right?


    Good luck and hopefully you will get this resolved. Come back and share the outcome.
    It wouldn't go over there, but the guy was just making threats. The guy making threats is only a tenant, another deadbeat welfare bum. The upper end of the driveway is gated. The other neighbor did call the state police when they moved in because they were told by their realtor that this was a public road. The police wouldn't even come out. It wasn't a problem because they still have full access and the steep entrance is the one that has been gated since then. I even called their realtor before they closed on the house and told him that it was a private drive and he wouldn't hear it. They did apologize after they found out.

    Maybe you didn't understand or I didn't explain it, but I plan to put a gate after their driveway. They would still have access but only to their property, no further. Your saying I can't do this? This would be between the two neighbors driveways.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Landlocked Neighbor Using My Driveway

    Yes you can certainly put the gate on your property so long as it does not block their access to the state road or access for emergency vehicles to anyone else.

    The state police do not have jurisdiction ... county sheriff does.

    Put up no trespassing signs and send them a certified letter for notice. Even if they do not pick it up or refuse delivery it is deemed served by mailing. If they subsequently go on the road, and not to the state road, call the sheriff and then take a warrant on them for trespass. A clever and very effective way to use the system ... it is also free and you can get the warrant pretty easy. The DA or Commonwealth Attorney will take it from there ... the neighbor will get the message PDQ.

    Calling the Realtor is like sending a smoke signal to the moon .... they are a dime a gross and I have a license myself to prove it. Most Realtors are leaches and know virtually nothing about real estate .... much less something complicated like easements.

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