Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys
Relationships with neighbors can oftentimes be tense. The real estate topic causing frequent disputes between property owners is a contest regarding the boundary lines between properties. Where properties share a common boundary, disputes can and often do arise over activities occurring at that common border.
Property ownership grants a number of different rights to the owner, such as the right to possess the property, the right to control the property, the right to exclude others from trespassing or even visiting the property, the right to enjoy the property and any improvements located on the property, and the right to acquire or dispose of the property. Stated simply, property owners are entitled and permitted to use their property as they see fit without interference from others. When an adjacent landowner encroaches or crosses a boundary line, many of the owner’s rights of ownership are challenged.
Boundary line disputes can come in many forms. It may be the case that trees or other vegetation straddle property lines or overhang dangerously across a property line. Fences may encroach upon a neighbor’s land and reduce useable space and unreasonably alter views. Other disputes may include neighbors who agree on the boundary line but disagree as to the proper use, such as when it is appropriate to cross the boundary for building or installing improvements. These matters are best handled with the assistance of professional and reasonable legal representation to resolve the problem while seeking to maintain harmonious neighborly relations.
Additionally, boundary line questions can arise when a neighbor begins some type of home improvement or construction or fails to maintain their property. Some of the common legal issues that may arise in boundary line disputes include:
- whether an improvement, tree, or other structure crosses a property line or fails to stay within setbacks established by ordinances or local code;
- whether the proper building permits for construction of improvements were acquired and followed;
- whether required approval from the homeowners’ association or local planning commission was obtained and followed;
- whether the improvement violates a restrictive covenant, declarations, or other private homeowner or neighborhood agreement; or
- whether the improvement interferes with an established property use, such as blocking a path or driveway.
Boundary line disputes are often necessary to resolve because, among other things, the dispute may threaten to diminish property values. Alternatively, where trees or structures are overhanging onto property and creating an injury risk to individuals, pets, and property, it may be necessary to seek legal action before someone is injured.
The Charlottesville property line dispute attorneys of MartinWren, P.C. are experienced dealing with the difficult legal and interpersonal nuances that arise in all boundary disputes. We seek to reach a reasonable settlement of the boundary dispute and provide competent advice to avoid unnecessary lawsuits or trials. If you need representation in a boundary line dispute, please contact John B. Simpson or Robert E. Byrne, Jr. at 434-817-3100 to receive solid legal counsel and save yourself significant time, money, and hassle.