Land "Right Of Way" abuse?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Oilpatch197, Jun 23, 2004.

  1. Oilpatch197

    Oilpatch197 Well-Known Member

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    I was driving the other day and Thought it was strange how somone had a garage UNDER a Transcontinital High tention power line, I thought they had a "right of way" and looking around another feller has a garage that appears to be about 4 Foot from a 19" Natural Gas pipline(I belive it is the Missisipian pipline System)

    Exactly what is the "right of way" rule, and are these people in violation of that law?
     
  2. Windy in Kansas

    Windy in Kansas In Remembrance

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    I am of the opinion that rights of way are not covered by laws or by rules.

    They are a signed and recorded legal document between the right of way holder and the current or former land owner that carries forward to the current owner.

    The specifics concerning each right of way should be spelled out in the binding contract/agreement that was signed and recorded.

    Yes what you described sounds like the situations could be nothing but blatant disregard for the contracts.

    Driving through farm land you will notice that some farmers heed the rights of way markers designating the road ditches, others will farm around them.
     

  3. Mike in Ohio

    Mike in Ohio Well-Known Member

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    Oilpatch197,

    The cases you cite are likely in violation of the easement. As Windy points out, it is a contract situation but there is plenty of case and civil law (state) about easements and rights of way.

    The first case might be iffy as to whether the person is wrong. The second is pretty clear in my mind. We have a large power line crossing the back corner of our farm (The towers are about 200 ft). The easement on the deed does not specify we couldn't build a house under the lines but why would you want to? On the other hand, we know someone that has their house under that same power line. The house was there first.

    Mike
     
  4. chickflick

    chickflick Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure as to 'rights of way' except in the auto world!! BUT.. and EASEMENT (as least in Texas) is a little different, I guess.

    YEAH.. you can build/grow/do what ever you want in a 'utility easement'.. BUT when the power company comes to call and wants to move/mow/trim or destroy what you've put there, etc... well.. too bad! Bye, bye whatever!!
     
  5. SteveD(TX)

    SteveD(TX) Well-Known Member

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    I don't know of any "right-of-way rule". There are all kinds of easements. The easement is recorded as a legal instrument that gives certain rights to the utility, municipality, state, etc.; and leaves certain rights for the fee owner. Most easements are purchased from the owner unless it is a part of original site development. All are NOT the same - you need to look up the recorded instrument to be sure. In some cases, you cannot plant or do what you want on top of a utility easement. It depends on how the instrument is written.
     
  6. RAC

    RAC Guest

    The terms are used interchangeably in many places.

    Easements usually refer to things like driveways, permission to come onto the property to read the meters, fix power lines, etc. at any time. Not necessarily able to affect the property in any way, but being granted access to it.

    Right of way usually mean that the other party, not the owner, has more rights than the owner (such as it is very unwise to pave over a pipeline right of way because it will be dug up at some point, but having a raised bed garden or putting a moveable garden shed on it wouldn't be an issue), as far as what can and can't be put there.
     
  7. GeorgeK

    GeorgeK Well-Known Member

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    it would depend on the local laws and the rules of the easement. Just because you have a gas line or power line, under or over your land does not necessarily mean you can't use your own land
     
  8. JWH123

    JWH123 Well-Known Member

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    It does sound like both of these are a violation of a typical easement or R/W agreement.

    However, it really depends on exactly what is written into the agreement between the landowner and the easement holder.

    Also, there can be such a thing as an aerial easement which doesn't really limit what goes on at ground level, but does limit the height of buildings, etc.

    You can write whatever you want in a contract, and as long as both parties agree, that is their business.

    Probably not too much for you to concern yourself over.

    John
     
  9. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    It's best to check the contracts to find out the terms of the agreement. I'm not sure about US land laws but in Canada, any agreement that affects a property is registered against the title. The situations you are talking about are called set-back regulations and it does really depend on the type of facility. A natural gas line will likely never affect you use of your property because they are trenched in quite deep but a sour gas line would affect your property because depending on how it's rated, tells how far it has to be from propety/buildings. It might not even affect how you used your land but could affect how potential buyers might use it because it could affect possible subdivisions or additional buildings.
     
  10. Oilpatch197

    Oilpatch197 Well-Known Member

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    If you ask me, they're not worded right, I mean we got a 3- 30" natural gas piplines running side by side that come up thru Illinois on it's way to chitcago.

    We get pamplets from Marathon/Ashland about Pipline Saftey, and the way they talk, you really want to live by one? if it ruptures? :eek: