What is the best way to get permanent access to surrounded property where access must go over multiple owners’ property?

A 20+ acre landlocked property is for sale. It has a 3/4 mile footpath/trail over three neighboring properties to get to it. There is no current recorded easement. What is the best way to get permanent easement access to this property? I would like to improve the access for vehicle traffic and utilities.

Asked on October 21, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You are going to need help from an attorney here.  The best way to obtain an easement is to ask for your neighbors to agree to one. This option saves time and money.  You can also establish maintenance agreement of the road that is to be placed on the property at the same time so that there are no questions.  If you can't work it out then you will need to determine whether or not there is a basis under the law to impose access. There can be implied easements under the law, prescriptive easements and a few that are particular to the state of Virginia.  The application of the law is really fact specific so please get legal help. Good luck to you. 

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