How Are Easements Created?

Most easements allow a landowner’s property to be used by others for specific purposes. Some easements are created through the consent of the landowner, while others do not require a landowner’s consent. Understanding how easements are created can help you to make informed decisions about your rights, whether you are a property owner or someone who has an interest in using another’s property in some specific, legally allowable way. Note however that the information provided below is relatively general and therefore “introductory” in nature. This area of law is complex. As a result, it’s a good idea to speak with an attorney, like a real estate lawyer in Sacramento, CA from Kassouni Law, about your specific needs and concerns instead of making any assumptions about your unique legal rights and options.

Creation of Easements

Most easements are created via contracts. A landowner will specify, either in their own property agreement or in a separate contract, that a utility company, their municipality, specific individuals, or the general public may use their land in certain ways and for specific purposes. These easements are considered express easements, as the intention of the landowner is made clear, in writing and in legally enforceable ways.

However, there are two general kinds of easements that do not require the consent of the landowner before they may be created and enforced. First, easements by necessity are created via court order, often despite opposition from the landowner. These easements allow a landowner to access a parcel of their own land by traveling through another landowner’s property. Easements by necessity are ordered when there is no other way for the landowner to access their parcel of land save for traveling through the other landowner’s property. Second, prescriptive and implied easements are created through use of the landowner’s property, not the landowner’s express, written consent. For example, a prescriptive easement may be created when someone continually uses a landowner’s land without their permission for a specified length of time. Again, these are general descriptors, so it’s important to speak with an attorney about what it takes for a specific kind of easement to be created in your state. State law tends to govern most easements, which is why it’s important to speak with a local attorney about your unique situation.

Legal Assistance Is Available

Property rights are not to be handled lightly. People work hard to obtain and maintain property. Whether a landowner’s property is commercial or residential, their rights must be respected and only compromised – in any way – when necessary and allowed by law. This is one of the reasons why there are few areas of law more complex than real estate and property law. If you’re a property owner and you’re seeking to protect your property from an easement or you’re seeking to obtain an easement, it’s important to receive informed legal guidance before you commit to a plan of action. Consider scheduling a consultation with a knowledgeable real estate lawyer today experienced in easement issues. A consultation will allow you to ask questions and make informed decisions about how best to proceed.