Dalton and Tomich white logo
Dalton and Tomich white logo

Property Rights and Prescriptive Easements

The concept of an easement is well established in law. It is commonly defined as a legal right that allows someone to use another person’s property for a specific purpose. The common type of easement involves a public utility using private property to have electric or cable lines above ground, or water and sewer underground. Another common type of easement is access through property from a public road to water.

A prescriptive easement is earned through continuous, adverse and uninterrupted use.  That is, a person or entity using a specific area for a number of years, openly, notoriously, and adversely to the rights of the property owners.

By “openly and notoriously,” the law means that the use is visible and without an attempt to hide. That is, using the property in plain sight of the property owner another, leading no doubt about the claim of access. 

“Adversely” means that the one seeking a prescriptive easement has used the passage under the belief of having a right to do so, independent of the property owners’ permission.

Each state has defined under law its own parameters of how best to define the elements of prescriptive easement. Before you file a claim, make sure you consult with legal counsel to determine if you have a valid claim to assert, or defend, based on the elements of Prescriptive Easement.

If you have any questions about a potential claim of a prescriptive easement, please contact Daniel Dalton or one of the professionals at Dalton & Tomich PLC to discuss the same.

Attorney Advertising Disclaimer

Please note that this website may be considered attorney advertising in some states. Prior results described on this site do not guarantee similar outcomes in future cases or transactions.