Can someone go on someone else’s land to get to their house?

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022

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Can someone go on someone else’s land to get to their house?

I have home on 68 acres and there is a creek that gets up a few times a year. I have been going through another property to get home for 20 years, however someone has now moved onto the land. Can they stop me from going on there property to get home? It is my only way to get home if the creek gets up.

Asked on October 15, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Kentucky


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

First, it may be possible to get an easement, or the court recognized legal right to cross their land IF your land is totally landlocked--but until and unless you get an easement (such a legal determination), they can stop you. At present, without an easement, it's their property, not yours, and you have no legally recognized right to enter it. 
Second, if it's only a "few times a year" that the creek blocks you, that will not qualify for an easement. Based on what you write, your land is not totally "landlocked": it's only a few times a year that you can't access it your regular way and you could, it seems, build a bridge over the creek if you wanted. Nothing in what you write suggests that your land is competely inaccessible but for boing over their land, and if its not completely inaccessible, you can't infringe on their right to control access to their own property. For example, if ou could bridge the creek, you'd be expected to do so--to spend your money, not trespass.

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