In Terms of Easement Usage, What is the Difference Between “Ingress and Egress” and “Over and Across?”

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“Please. What is the difference between an easement for INGRESS AND EGRESS (not exclusive) as opposed to an easement “OVER AND ACROSS” lands? The easements run through a gated community to a river. The Ingress and Egress portion terminates at a point about 2000ft above the river. Then, the OVER AND ACROSS language describes the rest of the way down to the river (some over our land). We are not a part of the HOA. There is a concrete boat ramp into the river (on our property). Are we liable for any injuries sustained by the HOA members (or anybody else) using the ramp? Children, adults, their dogs and horseback riders also use this concrete ramp to get into this river. The parcel adjoining the easement is legitimate commons area for the HOA and they have over 23 acres all directly on the river so they do have plenty of access. Thank you very much for your time in response.”

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

The difference between the easement language may be quite subtle, and depends on the specifics of the situation. Normally, an ingress/egress easement is strictly for the purpose of getting across a property (i.e., getting to the other side), whereas an easement “over and across” could be interpreted as being a bit broader, perhaps including the right to stay on the land longer and make use of it.

Your possible liability for injuries is a question beyond the scope of this format, since it depends on the specifics of your state law and of how you are using and maintaining the property (and who is legally responsible to do so).



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Author: House Attorney

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