Get Connected
  • facebook
  • twitter
Print

‘Prescriptive easement’ needs to be repealed

Ever hear of a thing called a prescriptive easement?

If not, you seem to be in the majority.

This is an outdated, antiquated, 150-year-old law that has managed to hang on and plague landowners by taking away their rights and giving them to trespassers.

What the law does is grant an easement across your property to someone who has managed to drive across it for an arbitrary time period of 10 years.

Once it is established, there are no safeguards for the owner to go to court and regain control of the property. It is forever.

The trespasser now has the say over that property. All the owner retains is the deed and paying the taxes.

This law is like a snake in the grass; few people ever hear of it until it is used against them.

After which the natural thing to do is seek legal counsel, but they can't help.

You, the owner, have no rights in this law. All you do is pour money down a black hole in a futile attempt to get back what you should never have lost.

Most seek help in the legal system, but the remedy is in the legislative system. This outdated antique needs to be revised or abolished.

It is like a law requiring water troughs and hitching posts be maintained on Main Street.

Legislators refuse to consider commonsense changes and instead predict a catastrophe scenario if the law were changed in any way.

I don't see how giving landowners a way to protect what's theirs would end time.

All this law does is create anger and resentment in a neighborhood. It makes enemies of people for no reason.

If an access is needed, it will stand in court, but at least both sides can plead their cases.

No one is just declared winner because of a time period.

I intend to keep seeking justice in my case and urge anyone who has had this happen to them to contact their representatives and demand relief through commonsense changes to this law.

James R. Haggerty

Keyser


Print

User Comments