boundary line disputes

boundary line disputes

Probably the most common type of lawsuit involving real estate,because it is the type least likely to result in settlement before trial. Problems generally arise as a result of some or all of the following four factors:

1. Formerly unsurveyed property owned by amicable neighbors passes into the hands of an outsider who orders a survey and discovers the boundary lines are in different places than previously thought.

2. Formerly amicable neighbors who did not care about a 10- or 20-foot discrepancy in boundary lines suddenly care when oil or gas is discovered under the land, or the property becomes so valuable that it is being sold by the square foot rather than by the acre.

3. Advances in surveying technology would have placed a property corner in a different loca- tion than the original surveyor placed it, and when this is discovered, the neighbors go to court.

4. Someone mistakenly builds a house or other improvement with a portion located on a neighbor's land. Words are exchanged regarding tearing down the trespassing improve- ment, and the parties resort to the court system to solve their differences.

There are very specific rules for resolving boundary line disputes:

1. Advances in technology make no difference because the property corners are where the original surveyor placed them according to his or her own state-of-the-art technology for the time, not at the absolutely accurate location according to today's technology.

2. If there are mistakes in the description, courts follow a hierarchy of things to consider and things to ignore if there is a conflict among descriptions within a deed.

3. If someone innocently builds an improvement that encroaches on another's land, most courts will figure out a way to either give the property to the encroacher or will order the other person to sell a minimal amount of land to the encroacher.

The Complete Real Estate Encyclopedia by Denise L. Evans, JD & O. William Evans, JD. Copyright © 2007 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Bondurant also represents clients in complex oil and gas litigation, adverse possession and boundary line disputes, subdivision covenants and other title-related litigation matters.
If a current survey is obtained, the survey exceptions in the title policy may be removed and insurance coverage provided to insure against any undiscovered encroachments, overlaps, variation in area or measurements, boundary line disputes, and roadways, unless specifically excepted from coverage as being shown on the survey Lenders routinely require the removal of the survey exceptions in a lender's title insurance policy.