Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys
Those who are faced with a heated dispute with a neighbor over a boundary line, can rely on Charlottesville Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys at MartinWren, P.C. for guidance. One of the most common disputes between neighbors who are property owners, is where their land meets the other. Unless there was already a fence separating the two properties upon purchase, lines can get blurred when one neighbor decides to finally put up a structure of separation. During this time, it can be useful to get advice from a lawyer who understands boundary line laws and property owner rights.
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 Rights
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.
Why Boundary Line Disputes Arise
Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys in Charlottesville understand that boundary line conflicts can arise between property owners, especially when one builds a fence around their property and their neighbor doesn’t agree. In most cases, reviewing boundary lines in a property deed is enough to amend the disagreement. However, where things can get complicated is if for some reason the property paperwork or deed cannot be located. What this often means is that a new survey must be done. Sometimes, neighbors can agree upon boundaries amongst themselves, while others don’t reach such a resolution so quickly.
Common Reasons for Boundary Conflicts
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 help from Charlottesville Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys in VA to resolve the problem, while seeking to maintain harmonious neighborly relations.
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.
Hire a Surveyor or Go To Court
Neighbors who cannot agree about the boundaries of their property have a couple options. For one, they can hire a surveyor to perform a survey and then agree to abide by the results. Or secondly, they can attend court and have the matters handled there instead. If the neighbors do have to turn the boundary line dispute into a legal issue, chances are their relationship is going to be tarnished too. Those who are having to attend court over such a disagreement, can talk with Virginia Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys at MartinWren, P.C. for representation and support.
Plant Markers Can Set the Boundary
If neighbors are able to set the boundary themselves, they may use an obvious line of trees or other plants as their marker for where the two properties divide (that is, unless the foliage is the focus of the dispute). Boundary line disputes do not have to be a hassle, and many can avoid court if they simply agree to work together.
Unfortunately, not all neighbors are friendly or flexible, so that is where Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys in Virginia can step in for assistance. Neighbors may find this situation an opportunity to take advantage and gain more land versus handling it with integrity.
Get Help and Information
Needless to say, neighborly conflicts can make one’s home life quite comfortable. To help increase the chance of a successful negotiation or court dispute, it is important to talk with a member of our legal team for more information. By consulting with an experienced attorney, you can gain knowledge about the situation and help prevent making crucial errors.
If you are not able to reach a middle ground with your neighbor over the boundary, all that may be needed is a letter from your attorney. If your neighbor knows he or she is in the wrong and just wants to take advantage, this may make them think twice before disputing further. It also sends the message that you are serious and will do what it takes to get the matter settled.
When Boundary Line Disputes are Necessary
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.
Our legal team at 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 Boundary Line Disputes Attorneys in Charlottesville, Virginia at 434-817-3100 and ask for John B. Simpson or Robert E. Byrne, Jr. to receive solid legal counsel and save yourself significant time, money, and hassle.