T Nation

Neighbor Says Gate Protrudes Into His Land


So our shithead of a neighbor wants to build a wall in between us, so he took out the fence that used to be there and dug a huge trench for the base of his wall. Our gate he claims protrudes over his property according to his 'line' marked by his land surveyor by 1.5 inches. He wants to cut our gate so his wall fits. He does not want to build away or around (drill a hole for our gate to fit).

How can I know if his line is accurate enough? 1.5 inches is pretty short so how do I know the line is measured too close or too far?
Anyone ever dealt this retarded nonsense like this before?


Let's say this is the front yard's width. The | indicates boundaries for both houses. The ||||| is a strip of public land that people can run on or whatever, no idea.
What can I do to ensure he's not measuring too far from the public land and that I'm not getting screwed?


You'll need the land surveyed correct?


that would require 1200$. is there a cheaper alternative before i do that?


I've never had to do it, but I believe that's the only way, especially when talking about such a small increment.

could be wrong though.


I must tell you that your diagram is one of the shittiest I have ever seen.

The only option left is to tear down his house and start from scratch.


was the land developed by a company/ is it a gated compound?

If so, the developers that originally sold the land probably have site plans on record. These typically show plot boundaries.


Yea here's a 'better' diagram.
The red is the gate. See it apparently stuck out a little. We built the gate until it hit a wire fence that used to be there before they removed it to build their wall, under the assumption that the wirefence was a boundary line. But they claim the fence was on their property and is theirs.

I do not know about the land being developed by a company, nor am I sure I understand that question.

It's a house on a plot of land. We hired someone to build the gate after living there for a while.


If I remember from one of my law classes correctly...you may have legal ownership of that 1.5 inches of land if your gate was on it for long enough and there was no notice given to you by the owner...I'm not sure but adverse possession might be applicable.

Don't quote me on that, but check on it for sure.


HAHA! That is much better! I like your blue house.


his gate had to be here for 10 years with no-one complaining about it during those 10 years. Then he would own that 1.5inches, all the way down the line. otherwise, you'll have to move your gate.

At least that's the norm for this sort of thing. Some states (counties) have even longer time periods than 10 years.

EDIT: On a side note, if you were to have filed with the county "new" plat dimensions without your neighbor knowing about it, afterwards there isn't shit he could say or do...of course that is a dodgy way of doing things with regards to real estate.


Bury him in his own ditch....


I like Alpha's recommendation! %^)


So is waiting a number of years to inform him that an inch and a half of his gate is on your property and that he needs to get rid of it...



if i were you

id just destroy his shitty wall


Not really, say he puts up a fence that is on HIS land. tens years goes by and the fence has disintegrated (sp?), and you want a new fence becuz you have pomeranians yipping about all day long and you don't want them schmoozing with his poodles. So you tear down the old fence and build a new one. It is still on his land but because 10 years has gone by and no-one, nor poodle loving pomeranians, has said anything, that land now becomes yours....How is that dodgy?

EDIT: I see what yer saying about "informing" him that you now own his 1.5 inches of land. don't inform him....just go to the county and update the plat with the new dimensions. if it goes to court, 10 years has gone by with no-one saying anything, judge will side with the person gaining the new 1.5 inches.


In all seriousness, you need a surveyor to do it. Also ask your district council or territorial authority what their policy is on fence tolerances, I doubt they'll kick up a fuss over 1.5".

I know that here in NZ, architects and surveyors will never take the fence as the legal boundary.


I represented a client in an adverse possession/prescriptive easement case that dragged on for two years and cost something like $80,000, for about 100 square feet of property.

Just so ya know.


EXACTLY, Stronghold. It's called laches... simply put, if you dick around and don't act in a timely fashion to enforce certain equitable rights you can lose the ability to enforce them, even if a particular statute of limitations hasn't fully run.

Wrt adverse possession, good odds that it could win the day but OP needs to tell us his state of residence. Several statutory differences could come into play... in addition to length of time (10 yrs is by no means standard across the country) there could be issues in some states if all this arose from an initial surveying error, or if the state has particular tax duties on the part of the adverse claimant.


The term you are concerned with is "prescriptive easement". It means you may have earned an easement on his property due to the length of time you have been using it. Of course, you are going to need a lawyer to handle this, which will probably cost more than altering/moving the gate.


More importantly than the gate (I don't know which house is yours) but I would be more concerned with the big ass blue snake on the roof, he looks pissed about that gate.