Can someone sue and win an easement even though they have another access on their property?

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Can someone sue and win an easement even though they have another access on their property?

My husband and I bought our home 2 years ago and the property has an access to our neighbors. We were told that they were using it because their access was in bad shape. Last year the county fixed their road and the neighbors are now suing us for the access that is 30 ft from our door and splits our property in half. They also have a petition out to turn it into a county road.

Asked on July 12, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Missouri

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Depending upon the laws and statutes pertaining to easements in your State of residence (MO), there is the possibility that your neighbors could sue you for an easement over your property to theirs and prevail even though they have another access route to their parcel that does not go over your property.

Who told you that the neighbors were using access through your property and when?

Have you tried to get the neighbors to voluntarily agree to quit using your property for access to theirs?

Was the neighbor's access to your current property given with permission by your property's prior owners? If so, it is a good idea to get a statement from the prior owner concerning the permission issue. Finally, how long have the neighbors been using access to your current property? Some States have a requirement of a time frame of five (5) years or so before use by a non-owner could end up becoming an easement.


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