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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Our neighbour grabbed part of our land in order to give partial

Resolved Question:

Our neighbour grabbed part of our land in order to give partial access to a piece of land he is trying to sell to a property developer. He then claimed that he had the right to use it because he has been driving over it. He tried to bully and badger us into selling the land, which forms a splay at the end of the track leading to his property and the land he wants to sell. We considered selling to him to make the problem go away but then decided that if we didn't make a stand he would just come back for more. So we fenced off our land, inside the boundary he had marked for the land he wanted to buy off of us. We have now received a letter from solicitors acting for our neighbour, threatening to take us to the High Court to sue us for the loss of money from the sale of the land. The solicitor is also threatening to get an easement placed on our deeds at the Land Registry. What do we do?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.

Alex Watts :

Is it registered to you still though?

Customer:

Sorry is what still registered to me?

Customer:

Do you mean my email, if so yes

Alex Watts :

The land

Alex Watts :

When you say he grabbed it, did he register it?

Customer:

It is our land. Registered to us. He does not dispute it is our land. He simply claims right of way over the land. He simply trampled over our hedge with a tractor, we have images. He used a splay which I allowed him to use to deliver materials for an extension he was building, but he only moved in in 2011. He now claims that this was a historic right of way developed by his family. He bought the property from his aunt. But that splay did not exist when we moved in twenty years ago and the son and daughter of the man who owned the properties originally say there never was an historic right of way. The solicitors are based in Chancery Lane and since my neighbour has no money we believe they are in fact the lawyers for the property developer who wants to buy the land

Alex Watts :

How long has he had use of this right for? Since 2011?

Customer:

Yes. But he claims that his family always had use of it

Alex Watts :

But no-one had access previously?

Alex Watts :

Does he have any evidence of this?

Customer:

It is not entirely clear to me when the splay was cut. He has a google earth picture from 2009 which shows the splay, but it was definitely square for most of the time we have lived here.

Alex Watts :

Ok - well do not be bullied - if he brings a claim then he will have to show 20 years access.

Alex Watts :

In any event a right of way is not absolute untiil after 40 years.

Alex Watts :

In any event it would not be a High Court action - it would only be County Court

Customer:

Thank you. Should I go to a solicitor though to get a proper letter written?

Alex Watts :

Yes I would do that. It may cost you £200 but be worth it.

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything else?

Customer:

Thank you

Alex Watts :

Please do remember to leave feedback before you go today

Customer:

Yes. He says he will take out a formal application to the Land Registry to register a prescriptive easement and that any resistence will be groundless. What is that and can they do that without any input from us?

Alex Watts :

They can try and register it, but he needs proof.

Customer:

OK thank you. That is all. Thank you very much for being so helpful

Customer:

It has been a bit of a panic since I got home and opened the letter!

Alex Watts :

Yes I can imagine.

Alex Watts :

Can I help further?

Customer:

No thank you

Alex Watts :

Great, please do remember to leave feedback before you go today

Customer:

I will do

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