Am I responsible for encroachment on unimproved land sold in East Hampton?

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Am I responsible for encroachment on unimproved land sold in East Hampton?

I sold unimproved property which is part of a
Trust left to me 2 siblings. The transaction
closed, but the atty is holding back 2,000 to
pay to have a neighbors encroaching fence
removed if the neighbor doesnt respond to the
affidavit sent within 60 days. Shouldnt this be
the new owners headache since this
transaction is now closed?

Asked on November 27, 2017 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If you knew of the encroachment and failed to disclose it, then you committed fraud and you are liable for their costs or losses due to this.
If you did disclose the encroachment or were unaware of it (e.g. did not know where the boundary was; though the fence was on the neighbor's land; etc.) you are not liable for responsible: only a failure to disclose a known issue makes you liable. 
Of course, to get the money, even if you should, if they won't voluntarily pay it, you'd have to sue; you could spend more (in time and/or money) suing than you hope to get back (i.e. more than $2,000), so you need to make a cost-benefit decision as to what to do.


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