My Neighbor Posted No Tresspassing Signs on our Easement, Can he do This?

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“There is a Private Access Easement 50ft wide 250 ft long from the public road, between my property and a neighbor beside me. There are 2 more lots behind these two and they have private drives branching off the top of the easement to get to their houses. The easement borders my entire property line, I have a private driveway off the easement to my house. Do I have the right to use the entire easement to get to my yard if I or visitors don’t have room to park in my driveway. Part of the easement is paved (about 15 ft x 250 ft) with the rest on both side being grass. My neighbors behind me owns the property under the easement because in PA you can not have a private resident on a lot that is landlocked so 25ft from the center of the easement to the left and right is owned by the 2 neighbors behind the 2 lots along the public road. The neighbor who lives directly behind me says that when I pull off the paved part of the easement over the grass part of the easement (approx. 10 ft) to get to my front yard, I am tresspassing over his property. He has called the police 4 times in the past 6 months accusing me of tresspassing when I park my car in my yard. The police say it’s a civil matter and are confused when I tell them that it’s an easement not my neighbors private property. My neighbor has posted NO TRESSPASSING signs on the easement, along my yard. Couldn’t those signs be considered blocking the easement? I have read my deed and my neighbors deed, they both say that the 50 ft “Private Access Easement” is to be shared and maintained by all 4 lots. He is acting as if, because part of the easement is paved that means that the rest of the easement, which is grass, is no longer easement. I have mowed the grass part of the easement on my side, along my property line for 15 years, his house sits up on top of the hill behind me and the easement stops where his driveway begins, the easement does not border his land. I, nor anyway coming to my house has never blocked his access to his property, no one has ever parked on any part of the 50 ft easement.

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1. Do I have the right to access my property from the easement? 2. Does he have the right to call the state police to my house everytime I park in my yard? 3. Can I sue him for harrassment if he doesn’t stop?”

Well, these things depend on the particulars of the easement grant and local law, but it sounds like your neighbor is overstepping his rights. Unless the easement is exclusive, you have the right to use it as well, so long as you aren’t interfering with the other easement owners’ use. So it becomes a practical question whether your parking is interfering with his use (you will say no, he will say yes).

Ultimately, this is a civil matter, and would have to be resolved in a civil lawsuit, if you can’t come to an agreement. This will cost each of you much more money than you’re interested in spending, I assure you, so I’d try first to see if there is any neighbor mediation service in your area that might help you reach a more amicable (and much less expensive) agreement.

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Author: House Attorney

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