Do I have grounds for an easement and to retrieve my property?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Do I have grounds for an easement and to retrieve my property?

I have been using a pasture which has now been owned by another person for the last few years. I was told that I am no longer allowed to use the part of the pasture that belongs to the new owner and that I am not allowed to retrieve my posts and wire. We initially had a verbal agreement before and after the new owner took possession of the property.

Asked on February 21, 2017 under Real Estate Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You must be allowed to retrieve your property, since you'd had it placed with permission of the then-owner (i.e. your placing it there was not trespassing or otherwise illegal). If not, you could likely sue for its value, since they have no right to take or withhold the posts, etc. from you. However, you do not have a right to get an easement: easements are either given voluntarily (e.g. the other property owner will give or sell you it) or are given by a court if you have land of your own which can *only* be accessed by crossing another person's land. In that limited case, you can get an easement to cross the land to get to your property. But the fact that you previously had an oral (that's the better term than "verbal") agreement to use land with a prior owner does not give you any rights to an easement.

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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