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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
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    3

    Default Easements Speed Bumps

    My question involves an easement in the state of:Alabama
    We have three lots serviced by a gravel drive. The lot nearest the "paved road" has a 30' easement, as do I, being the second closest to the road. The third lot is at the end of our drive and easement. Over the years my neighbor and I have maintained the road while the owner of the third lot has done nothing. The third lot owner has kids and employees who speed down the road and present a danger to small children and also damage the road causing potholes etc. After dropping another $1000 on gravel and grading my good neighbor and I decided to install two small speed bumps in order to not only slow down the third neighbor but to also slow down anyone coming down the road too fast and causing damage.
    Here is the problem: The third neighbor is pitching a fit about the speed bumps and using his dually truck to tear up the speed bumps by revving his engine and spinning his wheels. He has also told his employees to drive around them and spin tires in the grass thus doing further damage. This morning he announced that we were barricading the easement with the speed bumps and now a trash can on either side in order to prevent them from driving in the grass.
    What con we legally do to make him stop destroying our property and to recoup the cost of fixing the damage. I say Legally as the quick answer will result in a physical confrontation that we would like to avoid.

    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    18,340

    Default Re: Easements Speed Bumps

    "Legally" he's committing vandalism. So you call the police and see if he can be prosecuted.

    Or "legally" you sue him for the cost of repairing the easement. If you have to sue him over and over again, maybe he'll get the idea.

    Or "legally" you go to court and get an injunction against that behavior and if he continues he can be held in contempt and possibly prosecuted for it.

    Trouble is, anything you do "legally" is still likely to escalate hostilities so be prepared for it.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Easements Speed Bumps

    Thank you for the advise.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Behind a Desk
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    98,846

    Default Re: Easements Speed Bumps

    The question is raised, of whether you have any right to impair the dominant estate's use of the easement by installing speed bumps and, to the extent that a right exists, whether the manner in which you have constructed the speed bumps constitutes an unreasonable burden. If the owner of the dominant estate is avoiding the speed bumps by driving around them without leaving the defined width of the right-of-way, he's likely within his rights to go off of the road. The question of whether it can be substantiated that he's intentionally damaging the road or grass is separate, but I think it's reasonable to infer that he'll deny that allegation.

    If the right-of-way is also used for access by emergency vehicles, the installation of speed bumps may also be subject to review and approval by the local government.

    The way to resolve your legal differences, define any obligation of the third owner to contribute to past and future repairs, to get legal blessing for speed control devices, and the like, is either through agreement and entry into a contract or through legal action.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Easements Speed Bumps

    Thank you for your reply. The third neighbor called the County Sheriff and he tuned up on my doorstep. Took him out to look at the damage he was doing and the two small DOT approved speed bumps spaced 400" apart and he just shook his head. He said there was nothing he could do to him but he would call him and let him know he had spoken with me and saw nothing wrong....
    total of four great neighbors out of five is pretty good I guess.
    Thanks again

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