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  1. #1
    egressmom is offline Junior Member
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    Question Moving an ingress/egress

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? VA
    Our HOA is currently being sued by a development firm in D.C. to move our only ingress/egress. The approx 100 homeowners do not want our road moved ( it a 2.5 mile dirt road through a cow field) This company want to move our road 2.5 miles further from town and other essential services ( schools, hospital, fire, rescue) We have used this road for over 30 years. It is maintained by the homeowners and until just recently had grazing cattle on it. It is our sole ingress/egress. We as a HOA have been fighting with this company for over 2 years because we don't want our road moved. They plan to build up to 1,100 homes in this cow field. Do we have any legal rights or standing to assist us? Anyone have any ideas, they would be greatly appreciated. Also this is condisered a private road, and the town and county have no interest in it. Thanks.
  2. #2
    HomeGuru is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by egressmom View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? VA
    Our HOA is currently being sued by a development firm in D.C. to move our only ingress/egress. The approx 100 homeowners do not want our road moved ( it a 2.5 mile dirt road through a cow field) This company want to move our road 2.5 miles further from town and other essential services ( schools, hospital, fire, rescue) We have used this road for over 30 years. It is maintained by the homeowners and until just recently had grazing cattle on it. It is our sole ingress/egress. We as a HOA have been fighting with this company for over 2 years because we don't want our road moved. They plan to build up to 1,100 homes in this cow field. Do we have any legal rights or standing to assist us? Anyone have any ideas, they would be greatly appreciated. Also this is condisered a private road, and the town and county have no interest in it. Thanks.


    **A: your HOA should have already hired legal counsel to deal with such matters. If he/she has questions, let them post on this website.
  3. #3
    drewguy is offline Member
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    Do neither you or the HOA have rights to use the road? Because if you do, and it's properly recorded, then the only issue should be how much the developer wants to pay you all to move it.
  4. #4
    HomeGuru is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by drewguy View Post
    Do neither you or the HOA have rights to use the road? Because if you do, and it's properly recorded, then the only issue should be how much the developer wants to pay you all to move it.
    **A: it would appear that the HOA has a recorded or unrecorded easement and the developer owns the property.
  5. #5
    egressmom is offline Junior Member
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    feeling frustrated

    The HOA is quite small and we really live in a rural area. Our HOA doesn't have the kind of money that an attorney wants to handle this case. The term being thrown at us is prescriptive easement. This road has been used for over 30 years.
  6. #6
    drewguy is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by egressmom View Post
    The HOA is quite small and we really live in a rural area. Our HOA doesn't have the kind of money that an attorney wants to handle this case. The term being thrown at us is prescriptive easement. This road has been used for over 30 years.
    So, you really care about this road--to the point of fighting for 2 years--buy 100 homeowners aren't willing to throw in $1000 each to get some decent representation?

    What exactly to you expect to get from us here? If the easement is not recorded, you have a problem. If you don't even have a written easement, but rather are trying to establish a prescriptive easement, you will need a lawyer to argue the facts for you, because the other side has apparently bought some land for which there is no recorded easement, and for which their plans to not contemplate keeping your access road.

    You have an arguable legal position and you need to negotiate your best solution. We can't really do that for you here. What is the builder offering? To move your road? Will they pay to move it? Will it be a major inconvenience to use the new road? If it's not worth $1000 or even $5000 per homeowner, then that seems to be your answer--negotiate the best you can and move on.
  7. #7
    HomeGuru is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by egressmom View Post
    The HOA is quite small and we really live in a rural area. Our HOA doesn't have the kind of money that an attorney wants to handle this case. The term being thrown at us is prescriptive easement. This road has been used for over 30 years.
    **A: then the HOA should special assess each homeowner to raise the funds for legal fees.
  8. #8
    egressmom is offline Junior Member
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    trial continued

    There is no money, we are country folks without the funds needed. We had an attorney for a short period but ran out of money. If we could do it, we would have. None of us have that kind of money. I really don't understand prescriptive easement. Can anyone please explain. Does it mean anything? The trial is going to be continued, we just recieved papers today.Thanks for any help.
    Last edited by egressmom; 04-16-2009 at 09:04 PM.
  9. #9
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    A prescriptive easement is where you can claim use of a piece of property, even though you do not own it, simply because you have used it as long as the law requires so that you have developed a right to use it, even if in contrast to the true owners desire and intent.


    to make the claim defensible, you must prove you have been using it at least as long as the law requires.
  10. #10
    HomeGuru is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by justalayman View Post
    A prescriptive easement is where you can claim use of a piece of property, even though you do not own it, simply because you have used it as long as the law requires so that you have developed a right to use it, even if in contrast to the true owners desire and intent.


    to make the claim defensible, you must prove you have been using it at least as long as the law requires.
    **A: and there are other factors.

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