Can I put a fence on my property if it will block my neighbor’s access?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I put a fence on my property if it will block my neighbor’s access?

I agreed to let neighbor share driveway as long as they lived there now they have moved and putting house up for sale. and I am afraid whoever buys the house they may block entrance. They originally had a driveway and removed pipe from ditch so now they would have to put a new pipe in and cover it up with dirt I want to put up a fence on our side of the property witch would block off access to my driveway fhey have lived there about 10 years. Can I do this?

Asked on May 24, 2019 under Real Estate Law, South Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If the neighboring property could access a public road some other way--e.g. the property fronts on a public road, so they could build their own, separate driveway--you can put up a fence on your own land even if it blocks the current access you voluntarily, as a courtesy, allowed that property to use. You have no obligation to make things easier or less expensive, etc. for your neighbors, so as long as this will not strand them without some way to access a public road, you may do it.
However, if the way the properties are set up, there is no way for them to get to a public road without going over your property (e.g. using your driveway), you can't effectively do this, since if you do, they could go to court and get an easement by necessity created: that is, when a property is "landlocked" and cannot get out to a public road except over or through another's property, a court has the power to create an easement giving the landlocked property access.

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 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.

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