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  1. #1
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    Oct 2020
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    Default Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    My question involves personal property located in the State of: Missouri

    My elderly neighbor had a survey of her yard. Unfortunately the relationship between us has become quite negative over the years. We believe it is a medical/mental issue. The surveyor placed permanent survey markers below ground and two foot wooden stakes with ribbons remain in place above ground, marking the locations of the permanent stakes. My neighbor "reinforced" these marked locations with neon orange paint. The neighbor on the opposite side of her has removed the wooden stakes and put in a fence. We have been patient---it has been three months. Can we remove the temporary wooden stakes marking the property line on our side?

  2. #2
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    Mar 2013
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    Quote Quoting smiley06
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    Can we remove the temporary wooden stakes marking the property line on our side?
    Can you? I'm sure you have the ability to do so.

    My guess is that your relationship with your neighbor will become more negative, perhaps hostile.

    She seems to think they should stay put since she went through the trouble to paint them.

    I don't suppose you'd consider asking her if it's OK to remove them.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    Can we remove the temporary wooden stakes marking the property line on our side?
    No you can't.

    It is actually a crime to remove survey markers. The Missouri statute is:


    Missouri Laws 60.355 – Prohibits removal or destroying of property markers — penalty — damages.

    1. No person, other than a registered land surveyor registered pursuant to chapter 327, shall knowingly move, remove, deface or destroy any corner of the United States Public Land Survey System, property boundary marker, bench mark or horizontal control monument.

    2. Any person who violates the provisions of this section is guilty of a class B misdemeanor.

    3. Any person who violates the provisions of this section is liable for the cost of reestablishment of permanent monuments or markers by a registered land surveyor. This section shall establish a civil cause of action in favor of any owner of real estate the boundaries of which are affected by a violation of subsection 1 of this section. Venue for such cause of action shall be in the county in which the violation occurs. Damages shall be limited to reasonable surveying costs and reasonable attorneys’ fees.
    https://www.lawserver.com/law/state/...ri_laws_60-355

    You might accidentally step on a temporary stake and break it off at ground level leaving it there on the ground. You say the neighbor had permanent markers installed. You just can't intentionally remove or move a marker of any kind.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    Quote Quoting budwad
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    No you can't.

    It is actually a crime to remove survey markers. The Missouri statute is:




    https://www.lawserver.com/law/state/...ri_laws_60-355
    The stakes and ribbons are not the "permanent markers" that are addressed by the law.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    Quote Quoting smiley06
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    The neighbor on the opposite side of her has removed the wooden stakes and put in a fence. We have been patient---it has been three months. Can we remove the temporary wooden stakes marking the property line on our side?
    I have little doubt that you have that ability and have to wonder why you question whether you have that ability given what the opposite side neighbor did.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    Zigner thank you for response. You stated at the end of your comment, "The stakes and ribbons are not the "permanent markers" that are addressed by the law." This is exactly what I am questioning. We are not removing "permanent markers", they are the markers that, for example, would be placed on an empty lot, to survey the location of a new home. There is nothing in the Missouri Law, that I can see, that pertains to these temporary markers---nor are they addressed in the subdivision indentures. At what point can these be removed---as they are temporary, and on the property line. They are quite an eyesore. Any help is greatly appreciated!

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    The relevant statute does not distinguish between "permanent markers" and anything else. Rather, it says that "[n]o person, other than a registered land surveyor registered pursuant to chapter 327, shall knowingly move, remove, deface or destroy any corner of the United States Public Land Survey System, property boundary marker, bench mark or horizontal control monument." The term "property boundary marker" is not defined in the Chapter in which section 60.355 appears, and I did a quick Google Scholar search and found no case law interpreting section 60.355 or otherwise defining the term, so I'm wondering what "Zigner" was quoting in response #4 in the thread.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    In Missouri, "approved monumentation" is described in "2 CSR 90-60.060 Approved Monumentation"

    AUTHORITY: sections 60.510(7) and 60.550, RSMo 1986 and 448.2-109, RSMo Supp. 1988.*
    Original rule filed May 3, 1994, effective Dec. 30, 1994.

    https://missourisurveyor.org/images/...378.pdf#page=4

    In the contemplation of these rules, wooden stakes set above ground as temporary indications of the approximate location of approved monumentation do not qualify for any statutory protection. They are not legal monuments.

    The links posted previously refer to the duties of County Surveyors and their official duties, primarily the preservation of the original US Government surveys done in the 1800's.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    Thank you Senior Member. I guess there is just no case law involving this matter---unfortunately. I did find case law ---in California -- defining a "permanent survey marker" as opposed the "Wooden stakes or lath with ribbon, or nails in asphalt with paint marks are not considered permanent markers." Again, unfortunately, Missouri does not go into such detail--defining permanent and temporary, and puts both under the "property boundary marker" umbrella. Below ground there IS a permanent marker. Above ground---next to the sunken permanent marker--is the separate "lath with ribbon".

    Thank you LandSurveyor for all of your help!

  10. #10
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    Nov 2013
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    Default Re: Can Temporary Wooden Stakes or Lath with Ribbon Be Removed from the Property Line

    There is absolutely nothing in the Missouri Laws 60.355 that defines either approved monumentation or permanent markers. It says
    3. Any person who violates the provisions of this section is liable for the cost of reestablishment of permanent monuments or markers by a registered land surveyor.
    Those temporary stakes and ribbons are placed by a registered land surveyor. Strict construction of the statute makes it clear that any marker placed by a registered land surveyor can't be removed.

    So for those of you who think the statute only applies to permanent markers I guess you think that you can walk onto a construction site and remove all or any of the stakes and flags that mark where corners, roads, houses, and elevations are without being liable to pay to have them replaced?

    Quote Quoting LandSurveyor
    View Post
    In Missouri, "approved monumentation" is described in "2 CSR 90-60.060 Approved Monumentation"

    AUTHORITY: sections 60.510(7) and 60.550, RSMo 1986 and 448.2-109, RSMo Supp. 1988.*
    Original rule filed May 3, 1994, effective Dec. 30, 1994.

    https://missourisurveyor.org/images/...378.pdf#page=4

    In the contemplation of these rules, wooden stakes set above ground as temporary indications of the approximate location of approved monumentation do not qualify for any statutory protection. They are not legal monuments.

    The links posted previously refer to the duties of County Surveyors and their official duties, primarily the preservation of the original US Government surveys done in the 1800's.
    I have read through the link you provided and it does define what an approved permanent marker is. 2 CSR 90-60.060 Approved Monumentation. However, nowhere does it address stakes and ribbons placed by a registered land surveyor. I can't find any connection to the Missouri statute.

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