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Claim title of ownership through adverse possession?

Hi, I have a question concerning adverse possession. My property sits on what used to be an access road for the railroad which the town now owns but cannot be classified as an official town road due to its non-conformity. The town owns approximately 20 feet of my front yard which borders this access road. This land has been maintained by myself and previous owners of the house for the past 30 years. Can we claim adverse possession to obtain title to the land.

Thanks

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Yeah, Demaio

You can claim the ownership of this land as you have been maintaining it from the last 30 yrs which makes you eligible for the same.

Check out with the your state and federal laws for further procedure.

Thanks

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Niicss's picture
Niicss | Joined: October 3, 2005 11:54 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi, Demaio

What Milesa said is correct, but befor you go ahead please consult your state laws for claiming the title as it require some legal formalities also.

For further information you can consult our other forum post on adverse possession.

Adverse Possession Law

Claim under Adverse Possession

Hope i have been able to help you

Niicss :D

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Samantha's picture
Samantha | Joined: September 16, 2005 11:59 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi Demaio,

Welcome to MortgageFit Forums.

I understand your concern. But like Milesa and Niicss, I too agree that the condition favors you regarding adverse land possession unless it is a government property.

I am thankful to Niicss for showing the path for details on Adverse Possession and its laws. Kindly go through it and consult an attorney regarding the matter.

If you have any more doubts that you want to clarify, feel free to ask. We will be happy to offer you any possible help.

Wish you best of luck.

God bless you.

For MortgageFit,
Samantha

This is because your are staying over that land

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blue's picture
blue | Joined: October 21, 2005 09:17 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi Demaio,

The only thing that bothers me is that as you said that land is now owned by the town. This indicates that the land is owned by Government.

But the positive thing for you is that it can't be classified seperately and is maintained by you and the previous owner for the past 30 years.

As Samantha and others adviced correctly, you need to refer the laws in your area as it varies a little between states. Also consult and attorney who hopefully will find a proper way out after going through your details.

Hope for the best.

Regards,
Blue

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demaio's picture
demaio | Joined: December 8, 2005 04:50 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Thanks for all the response. Let me clarify a few items so hopefully you can get a better understanding of my situation. I live in Connecticut so that would be the governing state laws. The property I am referring to is owned by the town I live in. I have lived at the home for the past four years, but the property has been maintained by myself and previous owners of the home for the past 30 years. Hope this makes things clearer.

Thanks

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Samantha's picture
Samantha | Joined: September 16, 2005 11:59 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi Demaio,

Welcome again.

As per Connecticut law, the period of adverse use must be at least fifteen (15) years and it should not be city or state owned property.

During those years you should have paid the taxes for the part of the land that you are talking about.

Since you were not staying there for more than 4 years that may pose some problems but if you and the previous owner have paid taxes for that part, then you may make a claim along with the previous owner. The biggest obstacle however will be that the land is owned by town.

So, I shall suggest you to consult an attorney who may go through the papers maintained by you and the previous owner and may suggest some way out hopefully. This is because the law varies between states regarding adverse possession and he may find out a possibility within the obstacle.

Don't get overworried. Just let your attorney take care of the things.

For further clarifications kindly post here.

God bless you.

For MortgageFit,
Samantha

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Jessica's picture
Jessica | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

The adverse possession periods for different states in the United States are given below.

StatesAdverse Possession PeriodWith color of titleWithout color of titleAlabama10 Yrs20 YrsAlaska7 Yrs10 YrsArizona2 Yrs-Arkansas15 Yrs 7 Yrs California5 Yrs -Colorado7 Yrs18 YrsConnecticut15 Yrs-Delaware20 Yrs-Florida7 Yrs7 YrsGeorgia7 Yrs20 YrsHawaii20 Yrs-Idaho5 Yrs-Illinois7 Yrs20 YrsIndiana10 Yrs -Iowa10 Yrs-Kansas15 Yrs-Kentucky7 Yrs15 YrsLouisiana10 Yrs30 YrsMaine20 Yrs-Maryland20 Yrs-Massachusetts20 Yrs-Michigan5 Yrs15 YrsMinnesota15 Yrs-Mississippi10 Yrs -Missouri10 Yrs-Montana5 Yrs-Nebraska10 Yrs-Nevada5 Yrs-New Hampshire20 Yrs-New Jersey60 Yrs 30 YrsNew Mexico10 Yrs-New York10 Yrs- North Carolina7 Yrs 20 Yrs North Dakota10 Yrs-Ohio 21 Yrs-Oklahoma15 Yrs-Oregon 10 Yrs-Pennsylvania21 Yrs- Rhode Island10 Yrs- South Carolina20 Yrs- South Dakota20 Yrs- Tennessee7 Yrs20 Yrs Texas3-25 Yrs-Utah7 Yrs-Vermont15 Yrs -Virginia 15 Yrs-Washington7 Yrs-West Virginia10 Yrs-Wisconsin10 Yrs20 YrsWyoming10 Yrs -

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Thanks for the information.

Shelle

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

I have been living in a house for 7 years without paying rent or mortgage. All the utilities have been in my name soley for the 7 years. Previous to my 7 years, someone else lived here for 5 years without paying rent or mortgage and all utilities were in her name solely. We live in the state of Pennsylvania, can I combine my 7 years to her 5 years and apply for adverse possession.

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adonis's picture
adonis | Joined: October 22, 2005 05:04 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Welcome MsD,

This will depend upon adverse possession laws in your state. I think you should contact a lawyer who deals with cases of adverse possession.

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Samantha's picture
Samantha | Joined: September 16, 2005 11:59 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi Ms D,

Welcome to the forum.

In Pennsylvania, one can get property title after using it for about 10 years. But I don't think you can combine the time period of 7 years and 5 years. In that case, you may have to show legally that you have occupied and used the property for 12 years in total. I guess this is not possible because the utilities paid by the person staying for 5 years were in her name only. That is why it will not be possible for you to claim the property through adverse possession.

If at all you wish to get the title through adverse possession, you need to stay there for 3 more years.

As I am not completely aware of each and every provision of the adverse possession laws in your state, you may consult an attorney as he may be able to explain things better.

Hope this will help you.

God bless you.

Samantha

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Jessica's picture
Jessica | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi all,

Some states follow the rule that a person willing to get property title through adverse possession after a specified period of time should pay taxes each year. The possession must be open for the public to see.

The possession should be exclusive to him or her (for example, a fence, driveway, road, etc) and it must be hostile to the actual owner of the land.

You need to check the above details and also get an idea about your state specific criteria for adverse possession.

Regards,
Jessica.

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

i have a friend who has lived in his home for nine years and payed taxes for the past 9 years. would this entitle him to adverse possession?

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

We live in florida.

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

can you claim adverse possession if you rented but did all upkeep and paid all taxes for 8 years? we are in florida

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livinginnky's picture
livinginnky | Joined: September 8, 2007 08:31 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

[quote:3389b54be3]can you claim adverse possession if you rented but did all upkeep and paid all taxes for 8 years? we are in florida[/quote:3389b54be3]

Adverse possession laws do not simply give people the property they live in just because they have been there. There are very specific reasons to use this legal tool.

If you rent from someone for more than the adverse time frame does not give someone the right to get a house for free. The lease itself is the vehicle for someone having the right to rent a property. If you could get it through adverse possession then noone would get to keep their properties from renters. Why would anyone buy a home they could just rent for 3-25 years and get the house for free.

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

can my neighbor claim owenership of the right of way in front of my house? he has extended his driveway 43 feet into my frontage. is that legal?

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

can my neighbor claim owenership of the right of way in front of my house? he has extended his driveway 43 feet into my frontage. is that legal?

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brian1's picture
brian1 | Joined: June 14, 2008 05:14 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Not unless you let hom or do nothing about it. Contact an attorney to find out you roptions.

Good Luck
Brian

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

What about original possession by renting, although the lease agreement turned out not to be valid (owner never signed it) and owner has never received money for rent. Taxes are being paid by possessors, owner has not spent one dime on the residence in over 5 years (possessions have lived in residence 5 years, has maintained property and was required to make extensive repairs because the City cited the property as dangerous and run down, including putting on a new roof, an upstairs balcony (per City), landscaping (per City). Owner is not US residence, lives in Europe and has no intention of ever living in the house. He purchased house in 1986 and paid cash for it. Possessors have spent at least $100,000 for the maintainance and repairs to the residence. Owner knows the condition of the property, but puts responsibility onto possessors since he is absent from US. Possessors have lived openly in the house for 5 years, owner knows they are there but has only talked to possessors 2x in 5 years. How do you go about obtaining title by adverse possession once the delinquent taxes have bee paid? (Property is in California) Is it possible?

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jameshogg's picture
jameshogg | Joined: December 20, 2005 02:58 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi Stacey,

According to the California laws, for adverse possession, one has to occupy the land and claim it for the period of five years continuously and should have paid all the taxes. The taxes include State, county, or municipal which was levied and assessed upon the land or property from time to time. If you fulfill all these criteria, you can apply for an adverse possession. But if there is a rent to lease agreement between you and the owner, then you will not be able to claim an adverse possession.

Thanks

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

can my neighbor claim adverse possession on a portion of MY yard that he was maintaining for the previous owner? I PAID for a house and my yard!

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smith.sussane's picture
smith.sussane | Joined: September 18, 2008 09:57 pm | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi wolfie!

Welcome to forums!

Laws regarding adverse possession vary from state to state. If your neighbor has maintained the property and paid taxes for it for a certain period of time (as mentioned in your state laws), he/she can claim the property.

Feel free to ask if you have further queries.

Sussane

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

I have part of a city street fenced off for 24 years, Now the city wants me to remove the fence for installing a sewer line for people moving in back of me. Do I have any rights?

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

I am on the board of a cemetery association in Arkansas. This cemetery is a public cemetery but no one was taking care of it. So we formed an association to take care of it about 4 years ago. We are trying to get a deed for it from the county, we have had it surveyed. One of our problems is the adjoining land owners over the years have fenced off 1 acre of the land that was suppose to be for the cemetery. The 2 1/2 acres was set a side in 1889 and we have all the deeds and tax records to back up our claim. Our problem is one of the land owners are kin to a circuit judge that has inferred in 2 burials and one association meeting. She has only been to the one meeting in 4 years. My question is can these landowners keep the one acre? I have read several place that adverse possession can not be taken on public property. It there different laws for cemetery? We have a meeting in the morning with the county attorney but he seems to know the owners to and doesn't seem want to do help us much either.

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garycarroll's picture
garycarroll | Joined: June 20, 2010 08:55 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

I believe a requirement of adverse possession is that the occupancy must have been adverse to the owner. IE: if someone gives permission or does not know you are on their land, you cannot claim adverse possession. If the owner knows you are on the land without their permission but does not take action to remove you and you treat it as yours, you can (assuming other conditions such as time period.)
Thus, if the owner did not know you were using the land as yours, you were not in "adverse" possession of it during that time.

I am not a lawyer; I did once have someone try to claim adverse possession of a portion of my property. They had been carefully mowing a patch of yard for years, with their plantings and maintenance giving the impression of a property line location significantly further onto our land than reality. When we purchased the property we had a survey done, though the state did not require one. We found the real property line and informed them of their error. They triumphantly claimed ownership since they had maintained it for more time than the adverse possession law required. Consulting a lawyer (both sides) revealed that since the previous owner had had given them permission, there was no possibility of adverse possession. My understanding of the discussion was that this would have been true also if the owner was completely unaware that they were using his land. Adverse possession requires actual ADVERSE possession.
I am unable to offer an opinion as to whether this might vary by state.

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

I don't understand the usage of "color of title" concerning adverse possession.

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adonis's picture
adonis | Joined: October 22, 2005 05:04 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Hi Bastian,

It is true that any claim to title by adverse possession should be made under the color of title. It means a claim to title is made by way of a fact which is defective and also falls short of establishing the title to the real estate. However, on the face it appears to support a person's claim to title.

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Anonymous's picture
Anonymous | Joined: June 8, 2004 01:06 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

I live in Florida and my neighbor cleared about 75-100 fee into my wooded property in the back and built a shed has a road on my property which I did not know was on my property until recently. You can,t see it from my house. I saw an arial view on zillow.com and he is clearly using my property. How do I go about addressing this? Do i get a new survye, a lawyer or what? Adverse posession in Florida I read is 7 years and I don,t th

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adonis's picture
adonis | Joined: October 22, 2005 05:04 am | Posts: 0 | Location: New Jersey | 00 Dollars($)

Welcome Lynne,

You should go for a new survey and also consult a real estate attorney in order to know what steps you need to take in this regard.

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