My wife and I purchased our house almost 4 years ago and didn't have a survey done at the time because the sellers had a survey from when they had purchased the house 2 years earlier. The real estate agent recomended that we forego the cost of another survey. We received a copy of the "survey" when we closed on the house and everything appeared to be fine.
About a year ago my neighbor began a major excavation and building project in his backyard. In the process he had his land survey for building permits. What he found and was quick to point out was that the corner of his property cuts across my driveway right before it connects with the street. He told me to move the driveway and even offered to "help with the costs" of moving my entire driveway to where he wanted which was 20 feet over. (far beyond the property line). He purchased his property in 1988 and told me a story about how he allowed the original owner to move the driveway to this location and now he wants to revoke it.
I contacted the original owner of the property and told him about the situation. He informed me that the driveway is in the same place it always has been since the house was built in 1978.
My wife and I consulted a local attorney and he informed us that a prescriptive easement could be granted because the driveway was continuously used and maintained for the last 30 years and that we may in fact have a claim of adverse possession. The attorney drafted a letter informing my neighbor of our stance and offer to draw up a formal easement or to purchase the property. The lawyer then advised us that such legal action could becoem very costly and it would be cheaper to move the driveway.
We hoped it would all go away, but we have just found out that the neighbor has filed suit against us. My question is this: Is it worth fighting or am I better just moving the driveway? The property is question is less than 50 square feet, and my neighbor and I both own 2.5 acres of land. My wife and I don't want to lose a bunch of money in this process and my neighbor has money to burn and I think he is using this ability to bully us.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.