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IMPLIED EASEMENT OR IMPAIRED EASEMENT?

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Henry the Hunter bought himself a plot of 40 acres right smack in the middle of nowhere. It was the perfect piece of land. Beautiful layout and just the right retreat from the womenfolk. Only thing was, he couldn’t get to it.

The front side of the property was a meandering swamp that swelled up into a raging river in heavy rains. There was a dirt road off a side street, but that was posted private property with a locked gate. Henry had him a sharp set of bolt cutters, but the law wasn’t fully in favor of him using them.

The Judge said: “Build a bridge.” Regardless of permitting issues, traffic flow, or environmental impact in a wetland—the Judge did not care about convenience. He looked at records of where the lot came down from and the Right of Access was attached to that highway, not the dirt road. Right of necessity is another matter, and what is legal does not equal what is convenient for the landowner.

Henry didn’t have the money for permits and construction to build a bridge, but he did have a pair of waders. Way he saw it, that Judge just made his property more valuable. If his hunting camp was remote before, it was now nigh unto impossible to get to, and there was no way his wife was going to put on a pair of rubber boots to come find him.

In Florida, you can’t stop a person from accessing their real estate. You have Implied Easement to allow you access to your property, the question is where. You need more than a title search to learn about your Right of Access; you need a full land abstract to see where your lot comes down from and which road it is attached to.

* True story. Some of the details are changed to protect the parties involved.

Land Title of AmericaIMPLIED EASEMENT OR IMPAIRED EASEMENT?

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