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Pennsylvania landlocked parcel laws

Cheryl Walker

I am considering a purchase of 75 acres which at this time has no clear right of way and no road frontage. I have frequently heard the statement that it is "illegal" to deny access to a property owner in Pennsylvania. A) Can someone verify this statement to be true or false. B) If it is true, and there are multiple property owners surrounding the land locked property, who must give access?

Linden Smith

What should be illegal is creating a parcel like that in the first place. Here in Kentucky, people get shot in situations like that.

You would first need to talk to the surrounding property owners and see if any of them would sell you access via easement. Failing that, you would file a civil suit requesting that a judge order that an easement be imposed on one of your unwilling neighbors, for a fair market price.

In theory, a judge must grant you access to your property. In practice, this will take many years and lots of money, and the judge may well decide it would be better if the parcel did not stand alone in the first place.

Is the parcel a homestead with a lapsed easement, or a newly cut out lot that creates an imposition on an innocent third party?

My advise would be to avoid the deal unless there is a good existing road and a really cheap price.