Is it legal for someone to lock you out of or restrict use of your deeded access?

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Is it legal for someone to lock you out of or restrict use of your deeded access?

A new owner that has purchased the house that has our deeded lake access that runs across the back of it has locked us out of our easement and has even said he might give certain property owners the combination or will open the gate for us if we ask to be let in. I am quite sure he is not allowed to block or restrict our use and we are going to have the lock removed. The new owner purchased the property knowing the easement was there, the house was listed and sold as lake view.

Asked on September 21, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You should consult with a real estate attorney about how best to resolve this and protect your rights. If there is an easement across or on the other owner's land, he should not be able to restrict or interfere with the access. If the easement was not properly recorded, however, it might not be enforceable--the primary issue for easements is that they were created, filed, and recorded in the  proper manner. A real estate attorney can help you verify this; can help you enforce an easement against the new owner; or if there's no proper easement, can advise you as to any other rights or recourse you may have available.


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