Is it unconstitutional or otherwise illegal to deny legal access to one’s own property?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Is it unconstitutional or otherwise illegal to deny legal access to one’s own property?

In Colorado, any property that sits off of a federal or state
highway must request legal access from the Department of
Transportation CDOT. However, CDOT will not even accept an
application for requesting access requires an easement with a
culvert off of the highway without the property first having an

The county however refuses to issue an address without paying for
permits that I both do not need and are unnecessary. The desired
use is for farming which the county passed an ordinance claiming we
are a right to farm community. It is zoned rural so that’s not an
issue. I have water rights and an artesian well which required a

Both the state and federal constitutions explicitly specify that an
individual explicitly has the right to protect one’s own property.
Yet how can one do so if they have no legal access to the property?

Thank you

Asked on June 27, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Colorado


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You have a choice: you can bring a legal action to challenge the county's rules regarding addresses and permits, and *maybe* win on grounds that their rules are an impermissible burden on your proprerty rights--but no legal action is ever certain, so you can never count on winning--and in the course of doing so, rack up court filng fees, lost wages or income from taking time off from work, possibly attorney fees (unless you are comfortable representing yourself "pro se"); and bringing a legal action can also take months or longer. Only a legal action (lawsuit) could overturn the county's decision in your case and/or generally strike down its laws.
Or you can pay for the permits, even if you don't need them. While you need to make a decision you are personally comfortable with, on a pragmatic basis, the permits seem to be a much quicker and more cost effective option.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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