What to do about an undisclosed easement?

I bought a house 5 years ago. I just discovered there was an undisclosed easement that sets the property back 22 feet from the curb, 2500 square feet in all for the city to widen the road. I would never have bought the house if I’d known about this easement. I discharged the 2nd mortgage through bankruptcy and the primary loan was modified by the lender post-bankruptcy (Chapter 7). What are my options?

Asked on November 7, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you purchased the subject property five (5) years ago, most likely you received a title report concerning it. If so, carefully look at it to see if the easement is referenced within the preliminary report. If it is not, then you should make a claim to your title insurance carrier about it.

If there was a transfer disclosure statement signed by the seller before the close of escrow, carefully read it to see if the subject easement was disclosed. If not and you can prove that the seller knew about the easement that you are writing about before close of escrow but did not disclose it, then you may have a claim against him or her for overpaying for the property assuming your preliminary report does not reference the easement.

I recommend that you consult with an experienced real estate attormey further about your inquiry.

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 AttorneyPages.com 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.