easement by prescription- when is it extinguished

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donquixote1 | 14:37 Sat 11th Apr 2009 | Law
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I bought a terraced house 5 years ago. At the time, my neighbour owned both my properties and the adjoining property. The adjoining propert was rented out.

As it was the only way to get to my back door from the highway and in that 1995, the then separate owners agreed to the right of way by a Deed, and the Deed is included in the Land Registry register of title for both properties, I believed it included a right of way over the courtyard of the neighbour's adjoining house.

The 1995 Deed included the rights of way and repairing covenants between the two houses. The Deed also stated that its purpose was to formalise the rights of way which had been in existence for more than 20 years.

Since purchasing the house we have used the rights of way regularly, but the tennant has now died and the owner now disputes the right of way and claims that because they owned both properties, the 1995 Deed was extinguished. They also claim that only the covenants in the 1995 Deed were revived when we purchased, NOT the right of way.

We understand that because the RoW had been in existence for more than 20 years (as per the 1995 Deed) we have an easement by prescription. However, here is my question... Does the existence of the 1995 Deed or the common ownwership of both properties give the neighbour any grounds to dispute the Row??


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Neighbour can say what he likes - it is what is recorded on the Land Register property title that counts.
Surely the purpose of the Deed was to strengthen the formal position on the easement of right of access.
Common ownership of both properties by one person is not relevant - the title register is for the benefit of the owner of the current owner - you.
In the first instance, you might like to refer this to the solicitor who advised you on your purchase. Since it is he/she or you are going to be referring to the Law Society if he/she has fouled it up whilst working on you behalf, he may be willing to take an initial look - for free.

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