East Hartford, CT asked in Real Estate Law for Connecticut

Q: Would 15 year period restart if ownership changes?

My neighbor has been using a portion of my land (mowing, gardening, etc.) for well over 15 years. They never claimed adverse possession. I never attempted to stop them using the land, because we are good neigbors. They are selling their house and mowing away. Will the 15 year period start all over again with the new owner? We are in CT.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Christopher H. McCormick
Christopher H. McCormick
  • West Hartford, CT
  • Licensed in Connecticut

A: From your description it does not sound like your neighbor's use of the property was open, hostile and notorious as required by CT statute and you gave permission to your neighbor to use the land as they did. Also doe not sound like they would support a new owner's claim that this continuous usage supports a claim for adverse possession. Finally, new owner could not claim continuous usage for 15 years themselves. I do think it is important that you start exercising control of this property now that property is being sold and neighbor makes it clear to buyers it is not part of property being sold so there is no confusion post-closing as to your ownership.

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