If I have a shared driveway but my neighbor is putting a fence down the middle, what are my rights?

Asked on October 8, 2015 under Real Estate Law, Tennessee

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

It depends on the specific facts. First, do you each have an easement to use the other person's side? That's the kind of shared driveway we had. If so, he can't block your use or access.
Or if the driveway is owned  by you and he has an easement, he can't do this, because he can't put up a fence on your property. Or if it's owned by him and you have an easement to use his side, he again can't do this, because that would violate the easement.
Basically, if there is an easement legal right giving you access to the part of the driveway being fenced off, this can't be done, or if he is putting the fence on property owned by you, he can't do this. If there is a violation of your legal rights, you could bring a legal action to enforce your rights.
You write you're talking to their landlord. The "he" I am referring to is the property owner, who is the one who has the rights to do things to the property.
However, if you have not a true "shared" driveway by two side-by-side driveways where there are no easements and you each own your side, and he puts the fence on his property, then he has the right to do this, even if it is bad for you people may construct fences on their own properties.
You need therefore to check on who owns what and who has what rights. Look at your deed and title papers that should have the information you need.


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