If you and your neighbor disagree over the location of a property line, this is called a “boundary dispute.” Boundary disputes can be expensive to fix.
In deciding what to do about a boundary dispute, you may want to ask yourself the following questions:
- What is at stake? Is it two feet of land, an acre, or more? Does your neighbor claim that your garage, barn, house, or driveway is located on their land or vice-versa? Will the disagreement affect the value of your property?
- How much will it cost to resolve this dispute? Is the fight worth the expense, and can you afford it?
- Are you emotionally prepared for a long, unfriendly battle? Are there ways to resolve the disagreement so that even if neither side is totally happy, you can both sleep at night?
If you have a boundary dispute, there are a number of possible solutions. The least expensive and least confrontational way is for you and your neighbor to agree on a new boundary line. There are other more expensive options, like going to court. But going to court is expensive, and it is also a long process. And, even if you are not friendly with your neighbor, the tension of living next to the person you are fighting in court can be very stressful.
Legal Services for the Elderly has attorneys who can try to help you sort out some of the basic issues regarding boundary disputes. LSE may be able to refer you to a private attorney who can more thoroughly investigate your position and help you determine whether it's worth going to court. Call the LSE Helpline at 1-800-750-5353 to talk to an attorney for free.