Property Disputes in Virginia Beach, VA

Property disputes in Virginia are common between neighbors. They even occur between companies and governments. People want to protect what is legally theirs, but sometimes the boundary lines are not clear.

Find out what you can do if you have a property dispute in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Discover the legal remedies and actions that can help you clear up a misunderstanding, arrange a settlement, or manage an issue involving your property.

What Is a Property Dispute?

Property disputes are legal disputes that involve real estate, including single-family homes, apartments, roads, condominiums, and ponds. Virginia Beach, VA property disputes can involve a wide range of parties, which might include some of the following:

  • Neighbors
  • Homeowners’ association
  • Landlords and tenants
  • Family members
  • Trespassers
  • Property visitors
  • Government agencies

The General District Court of Virginia Beach has jurisdiction over many of the property disputes in Virginia Beach. If your dispute involves a dollar amount of $25,000 or less, this is most likely where you will file.

Common Types of Virginia Beach, Virginia Property Disputes

It’s important to know about common disputes to understand your circumstances. The most common property disputes often include:

  • Disputes between neighbors regarding where property lines exist
  • Disputes between landlords and tenants regarding who is at fault for damage to the property
  • Homeowners and real estate developers disagreeing over who is responsible for repairs on construction
  • People blocking their neighbor’s view via a “spite fence” or another structure specifically made to annoy their neighbor
  • Disputes between mortgage lenders and creditors over who can foreclose a property and who receives the proceeds of a sale
  • Disputes between homeowners and government agencies about whether they have a utility easement
  • Ownership disputes about who is the rightful owner of a property
  • Issues with zoning

Beyond these examples, you may find other situations in Virginia Beach where a property dispute occurs. In general, if you own land, you have to constantly watch out for it and ensure that others are not using it illegally or trying to claim it as their own.

Understanding Typical Virginia Beach, Virginia Property Disputes

According to the Virginia State Legislature, no one is allowed to enter the private property of a resident in Virginia Beach and harm trees or shrubbery. Unless, they have the express permission of the property owner to do so. The cutting down, burning, harming, or digging up of any such plant life is punishable by fines. In addition, you will be required to pay restitution to the landowner.

Furthermore, the Right to Farm Act of Virginia provides protection from nuisance suits for agricultural lands in Virginia Beach. Nuisance suits that are filed against farmlands, or lands that produce agricultural products, will be dismissed.

Legal Process for Boundary Disputes In Virginia Beach, Virginia

Has someone brought a property dispute against you in Virginia Beach, or are you starting a property dispute against someone else? If so, you need to understand the legal process you will go through. This process begins with understanding the issue at hand.

Understand the Boundary Issue

To understand the specific boundary dispute, you’ll have to do the following things:

  • Complete a land survey to locate the exact boundary of your home as outlined in the legal description of the deed. This survey will help you understand your property and how much of your land is encroached.
  • Conduct an appraisal to learn the exact market value of the piece of property that is in dispute.
  • Do a title search to find all of the documents in the chain of title of your Virginia Beach, VA property. The title search will show if any deeds may affect your ownership.

These things will likely have happened when you purchased the home. If that’s the case, the documents you already have should suffice unless the case goes to court.

The City of Virginia Beach states that a permit is required when any individual is building a fence that will be within 30 feet of any public right of way. When applying for a permit you must include a plan of the landscaping, the estimated height of the fence, and all materials that will be used in the construction of the fence. There is also a $30.53 application fee when you file.

Try to Find a Solution with Your Neighbor

Property dispute litigation in Virginia Beach, Virginia can cost a fortune, not to mention it can take a long time to settle a dispute. Therefore, it’s important to open a discussion between you and your neighbor. If you can reach an agreement and settle the dispute without going to court, you can save time and money.

Try to communicate directly with your neighbor. You can attempt sending a letter, email, making a phone call, or visiting their home if that’s a safe option.

If no progress happens and it’s clear that you and your neighbor are still on completely different pages, at this point, you should consider hiring an attorney to assist you. They can help you understand if you have legal grounds upon which to stand. If you do, then you can send a demand letter.

Sending a Demand Letter

This letter will be from your Virginia Beach attorney to your neighbor, and it will outline the property dispute. It will give your neighbor the option to respond via a requested action, or it will provide a reasonable price for settling the dispute out of court.

Your neighbor will likely forward this letter to their attorney to better understand the boundary dispute. From there, the attorneys on both sides will decide the best course of action moving forward.

Going to Court or Reaching a Settlement

Typically, the best option for both sides is to settle the dispute out of court to avoid costly litigation fees. But if your negotiations are going nowhere, it might be necessary to file the dispute with the court. The court will then look closely at the evidence presented and determine who owns the Virginia Beach, VA property in question. Keep in mind the court’s decision is legally binding. You may not agree with it, or it may not be exactly the result you wanted to see. That is why it’s typically in your best interest to settle.

Not all property disputes are handled by the District Court. If your case involves more than $25,000, you may have to come before the Virginia Beach Circuit Court. An experienced attorney in Virginia Beach can best help you navigate the stressful process of a property dispute.

Work With an Experienced Local Property Dispute Lawyer In Virginia Beach, Virginia

When it comes to property disputes, you should work with an experienced property dispute lawyer. Whether you’re filing a property dispute against your neighbor or you are defending a dispute brought against you, you’ll need a lawyer that understands Virginia Beach property law on your side. An experienced lawyer can help you settle before taking the dispute to court, which will save you both time and money. We can even help you connect with an attorney across Virginia state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an attorney in your area!

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