6-20-18 As Seen in the Daily Record - Fourth Department – Easement: New York Land Development Corp v. Bennett
Posted on June 20, 2018
Fourth Department – Easement: New York Land Development Corp v. Bennett
New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Fourth Judicial Department
Permanent easement – Predecessor in interest
New York Land Development Corp v. Bennett
Appealed from Supreme Court, Steuben County
Background: The plaintiff commenced an action seeking a declaration that property owned by the defendant is subject to a permanent easement appurtenant in favor of adjacent property owned by the plaintiff. The defendant appealed from a judgment that declared that such an easement burdened the defendant’s property. The court noted that there was evidence that the defendant’s predecessor in interest granted the plaintiff’s predecessor in interest the right to access the plaintiff’s property over defendant’s parcel. The plaintiff’s predecessor in interest was responsible for maintaining the access road that crossed the defendant’s parcel. Evidence was also adduced that the plaintiff purchased the parcel with knowledge that the gate existed. The defendant refused the plaintiff access.
Ruling: The Appellate Division reversed. The court held that the document signed by the parties’ predecessors in interest contain no words of permanency, nor any indication that it is meant to bind the grantor’s successors in interest.
F. Michael Ostrander, of Woods Oviatt Gilman, for the defendant-appellant; Gabriel V. Rossettie, of Rossettie Rossettie & Martino, for the plaintiff-respondent.