During the seminar Things that Go Bump in Your Surveys: Surveyor Liability to Clients and Third Parties in Massachusetts, Attorney Michael Pill discussed a statute that many land surveyors are unaware of, and what it can mean for their potential legal liability.
The problem, as Mr. Pill explained, is that by labeling a strip of land that is "Reserved for future roadway," the surveyor instead eliminates the roadway when the abutting lots are conveyed out, taking with them the fee in the roadway.
While a knowledgeable lawyer may expressly reserve the fee in the roadway in the deeds for those lots, but no surveyor should ever rely on that. Instead, Pill explained, a surveyor should label the strip "Lot A: not a building lot" to bring the plan within the court holding, as demonstrated in Hanson v. Cadwell Crossing.
Attached here are the treatise section, statute, and two key court cases (Hanson v. Cadwell & Tattan v Kurlan) interpreting and applying the derelict fee statute.
Mr. Pill further offered his services to any MALSCE member who has questions, by contacting him at Green Miles Lipton, LLP, No charge or obligation for an initial telephone call.
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