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Copyright (c) 2010 West Virginia Law Review
West Virginia Law Review

ARTICLE: A SURVEY OF THE LAW OF EASEMENTS IN WEST VIRGINIA

Spring, 2010

West Virginia Law Review

112 W. Va. L. Rev. 637

Author

John W. Fisher, II *

Excerpt

I. INTRODUCTION

"An easement is commonly defined as a nonposessory interest in land of another." 1 "Easements frequently are created to endure forever. These 'perpetual' or 'permanent' servitudes are so called because they are without durational limitations and, hence, may theoretically last in perpetuity." 2 This right to use the land of another, which continues to bind the owners of the respective estates long after the ownership of those who owned the land at the time the easement was created, provides fertile grounds for disputes and disagreements. Add to this the fact that easements can be created not only by an "express" agreement between the parties, but also by the application of principles of law to the particular facts, it should come as no surprise that disagreements and disputes are not uncommon. However, unlike a marriage in which the parties can divorce and part company with each other when the disputes and disagreements reach an intolerable level, in easement situations, the relationship will usually continue.

As might be expected, there are a significant number of easement cases in West Virginia. By their very nature, easement cases are fact specific and are often per curiam decisions in which the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals applies the general principles of "easement law" to resolve the specific dispute. However, when the various decisions are taken together, a body of easement law is fairly well articulated by our court.

As is so often true in issues of property law, an understanding ...
 
 
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