How long before adverse possession takes effect?

My neighbor put a driveway across our property line, without permission, then asked for an easement. We said OK but its been a year and we haven’t heard a thing. All my calls go unanswered.

Asked on August 30, 2011 Washington


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A cause if action for adverse possession has been codified in all states of this country by way of statute. The elements to establish for establishing adverse possession is the open, notorious, hostile, continuous, uninterrupted use of another person's property to the exclusion of all others for five (5) years where the property taxes are paid on the property.

If all of the elements have been satisfied but not the payment of taxes, a prescriptive easement can be established. From what you have written, your neighbor is in the process of establishing a prescriptive easement to use your property by placement of a driveway on it.

You should contact a real estate attorney about this as soon as possible.

Good luck.

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