My Association Discontinued Snow Removal on a Utility Easement, What Should we do?

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“I have a question regarding utility easements, access and maintenance. We have a utility easement in my neighborhood that runs betweeen two lots. At some point in time a previous lot owner cleared a path along this easement and now it is used by the neighborhood as a road. Our association has notified the current property owners that they will no longer provide snow removal as this is private property and not an established road (county assessor confirmed), This has become a liability issue for the association clearing private property. The current property owners state that it is a road with a name and as such needs to have snow service as they have had in years past.

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Now, if the county assessors records show there is no established road and only two lots with a utility easement then can the current property owners claim a grandfather clause and demand continued snow service as they have received in previous years?”

It’s possible that there is a public easement by prescription, if the public has used this road for the requisite period of time. However, even if that were true, I don’t think it would entitle the road to snow service. You would have to look at your Association’s documents to determine the extent of their snow service obligations, then see if the situation in this road falls under those rules.

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Author: House Attorney

A house attorney has answered this question.