How To Force Easement Access (Legally) WITHOUT An Attorney

Hey Tipsters!

I want to learn more about gaining easement access on a landlocked property.

In Florida, if your neighbor refuses to give you an easement you can (legally) force their hand to grant one.

I'm going through this process right now with a deal I'm working on in Jacksonville FL but I'm wondering if I can learn the process without having to use an attorney, in the future.

Does anyone in our community know the process to "force" easement access legally, on their own, without involving an attorney?

If so I'd love to interview you!

It may end up on the blog or Youtube channel (or if you'd prefer it can stay between us!).


@Jarenb, this is a great topic. I worked briefly for an engineering firm in Florida that did surveying of large tracts for new subdivisions, etc. I was repeatedly told at that job that you can force easement for an otherwise landlocked property, in Florida, like you said. I don't have any details on how that's specifically done, but, like you, would love to learn more about it.

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Yea man this could be a big deal potentially. You could buy landlocked properties for insanely cheap and then go through the process to get access and drastically increase your spread.

I'm just spending a lot on my attorney and wonder if I can figure it out on my own.

@Jarenb, I'd also be interested (if people are willing to share) what other states might have this or comparable statutes, too.

For example, I can tell you that in my understanding (very much as a non-attorney here, and without having actually tested this, personally), that Virginia only has this type of forced easement (easement by necessity?) in cases where the landlocked property and the property that you are seeking easement through were both formerly part of a combined parcel of land, and I think it even requires that you can demonstrate the access to the landlocked property historically passed through the area where you're now seeking easement. So a much higher bar than my layman's understanding of Florida's approach to this.

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What ever happened to this Jaren?

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Arizona has an interesting statute regarding Easement by Necessity.... I've never attempted to use it, but it's something that I may look into in the future.

Arizona law (A.R.S. § 12-1202) recognizes a private landlocked landowner’s right to seek an easement from a neighboring landowner upon a showing of “reasonable necessity.”


@jawollbrink Nothing yet! lol

I'm waiting for others to provide insight.

I'm still working my deal in Florida but at the attorney's mercy.

@tmiski VERY interesting - and thank you for the keyword Easement by Necessity.

Looks like Arizona is a contender for this strategy as well.

Do you think I could find an attorney who would teach me how to do this, instead of demanding I hire them to do it for me?

I feel like that's really my only option right now if I want to do myself.

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@dl7573 did you see what @tmiski said about Arizona? Interesting stuff!

@Jarenb @tmiski, this is good stuff. Sounds like the details of what's required probably varies a lot by state, but there may be some consensus around the term of "easement by necessity", at least, so if someone's dealing with a landlocked property, or thinking about jumping into one, searching for that term plus the state the property is located in is probably a good place to start.

I looked into this very lightly based on a property in Virginia that was waterfront but had no road access; pretty quickly determined that it would take an attorney who's dealt with this before to navigate this effectively in VA; and decided the legal bill might cost me a health chunk of what the property would be worth, even with access. If it's a much more cut-and-dry thing in some states, that would be great if it could be accomplished with some standard document filings and no attorney, but I also suspect that any situation where the owner of the property through which one is trying to secure easement is at all likely to challenge, it might be best to have an attorney going over everything from the start to make sure it's all done right, and possibly add some more weight and credibility to the effort, as well. In other words, if an unsuspecting property owner finds out that their new neighbor wants to force an easement against their property, and is handling it himself, I wonder if they might be more inclined to push back than they would if they got documents on letterhead from the neighbor's lawyer instead.

@Jarenb Rocketlawyer is my current attorney ;) I haven't had to use a real RE attorney yet, so I don't have anyone I can recommend.

re: Easement by Necessity

It's something that stuck with me from RE licensing school. I remember my instructor emphasizing that there is really no such thing as landlocked land in AZ. As long as you're willing to do the legal work to get the easement(s). Of course there is a cost associated with the legal work.

I always wondered how difficult the easement legal work really is. Maybe it's something we can do ourselves?

Hope that helps,


@dl7573 said:

if they might be more inclined to push back than they would if they got documents on letterhead from the neighbor's lawyer instead.

Yea I think these are all great points!

@tmiski That's what I'm wondering too - if I can do it without involving an attorney (and save on attorney fees) this could be a pretty incredible strategy... potentially at least LOL

@Jarenb I may be over simplifying the process, but I would think most of the work would be done by a surveyor, and the rest would be boilerplate legal docs.


Mike Ferreira would be a good resource to ask.

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@Geoffrey said:

Mike Ferreira

You know @Geoffrey now that you mention it, I think it was Mike that originally told me about this - I'm going to reach out to him.

@Jarenb Hey Jaren, I'm curious if you would feel comfortable sharing what it is costing you roughly to use an attorney to gain access to your landlocked property in Florida? I've got a lead for a 5 acre parcel in Central Florida that is currently landlocked. I'm curious how much I should cushion my numbers on account of the property being landlocked.

I spoke with someone in zoning/planning and they said gaining an easement should not be a problem.

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@josie sure thing! Right now I'm about $4,000 in. I should have access sometime in February.

I think on average it's going to come out to $4,500 per property but it can change depending on whether or not the neighbors fight you in court.

They can't win because of the law, but they can prolong the case and increase your legal fees if they want to be spiteful.

The likelihood of this is small though - a lot of the time the neighbor may just give you easement access without involving an attorney!

What's interesting though is that technically in Florida you can sue the neighbor for the damages incurred, like legal fees - so if you wanted to be spiteful back, and you had the resources...

(This isn't legal advice, this is just my opinion and how I understand the law as a layperson. Definitely speak to an attorney about it).

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Thanks @Jarenb ! Even if I had to spend $4,500, that is well worth it!